Artist Statement
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Denise Brown

Clay Artist

Artist Bio


Being anything other than an artist has never been an option for me even though I have a BA in Psychology.  After drawing designs in the dirt as a child and painting in high school, I was introduced to clay in college and knew instantly that ceramics was my field of interest.  While working toward my MFA in Ceramics at the University of Memphis, I was given the opportunity to pursue every aspect of the medium.

My work has always been inspired by the transitions of the land.  Erosion, animal tracks, flowers, falling leaves, running water, tree roots, clay beds, rocks, etc., it's all there to be read and translated.  I find my center, walking in the woods, a must before working.  Subscribing to Joseph Campbell's idea that, "the material of myth is the material of our life, the material of our body, and the material of our environment,"  I try to create physical representations of my search for a personal mythology derived from conscious and unconscious responses to my life, my body and my environment.

To begin the creation process, I make my own clay and glazes.  Throwing, coiling and slab construction are the methods I use to create a surface for carving.  Each piece is left a little bit heavy after trimming so that the design can be carved at the leather hard stage.  After bisque firing, I glaze to a stoneware temperature of cone 6.  Even though I consider most of my work to be decorative, all of my glazes are food safe.

I see the Earth as a beautiful creation of God that is still in the process of its evolution.  As I evolve with the Earth around me, so does my work.  I only hope that my creations capture some of the beauty that surround each of us everyday.

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