About Bruce Gholson

Bruce Gholson - Fossil Fish Flask - Seagrove, NC, Bulldog Pottery 

Bruce Gholson Artist Statement

I am always amazed at how classically traditional my pottery seems to be after completing a body of work.  I try to be unfettered and eclectic in the way I approach working with the clay, especially when choosing clay bodies, forming techniques, and types of firing necessary to achieve the surfaces that I desire.  I find that changing between porcelain, stoneware, and red clay, stimulates ideas.  The material based intuitions that result, feed back into the creative process.  Recently I have been enjoying the effect of red clay fired at stoneware temperatures with contrasting white slip or marbled with porcelain clay.  The red clay now provides me with a whole new palette of color and surface texture from my glazes which I had previously developed and worked with on porcelains.  

I have been fascinated with fossils, fish, reptiles and insects since childhood. Recent interests have included fossilization in amber, Chinese scholar stones, and arrowheads from the region.  Researching the chemistry of other arts such as fabric dyes, analog photography, and pyrotechnics provides inspiration in the form of a comparative formula based cabalistic mediation.  These interests blend into an esoteric mix that is hopefully evident in the overall feeling and imagery found in my work.  I want a sense of comfort in use, combined with an eccentrically sublime sense of the handmade led by a transcendent force.  Instead of the idiom of the direct and honest touch,  I am after something with mystery, a surface that seems more of a phenomenon than the result of traditional craft.  Success is of course a matter of perception and opinion, but for me having the goal aids in facilitating the journey- making pots in my own voice.

Bruce Gholson Bio

Bruce Gholson is a full time studio potter maintaining an open pottery shop, amidst a community of over 60 potteries in central North Carolina near the small town of Seagrove.   Bruce collaborates with his partner and wife Samantha Henneke and together they manage Bulldog Pottery.  He makes a diverse range of functional and decorative ceramics working with a variety of clays and glazes. Bruce received his M.F.A. in ceramics from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 1997, and his BFA in ceramics from the University of Georgia at Athens in 1978.  Bruce worked at Berea College’s Clay program in Berea, Kentucky for three years as the graduate apprentice, making pots, managing the materials inventory, firing schedules, and studio maintenance.  Originally from Stillwater, Oklahoma, Bruce started making pots in 1973 after his first exposure to clay in his hometown’s college ceramics facility at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, OK.  Bruce has work in many private and museum collections including AMOCA, Schein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramics Art, Mobile Museum of Fine Art, Arizona S.U. Art Museum, Gregg Museum, and Mint Museum.

Bruce Gholson - Fossil Fish Pitcher and Mug, Seagrove, NC, Bulldog Pottery

Bruce Gholson, Fossil Fish Covered Jar, Seagrove, NC, Bulldog Pottery

Skull Knob Teapot - Published in "Teapot II -500" Series

Bruce Gholson- Fish Shino Yunomi

Bruce Gholson Fish Shino Plate

Bruce Gholson Fish Shino Mug

Bruce Gholson Molybdenum Crystalline Vase

Bruce Gholson Fossil Fish Porcelain Glaze Painting

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