Totem XVI  RH.jpgAltered Vessel III
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Altered Vessel ITotem XIII

Ralph Holker

Berkeley, CA

Artistic Disciplines:
Visual Art

Artist Statement:

I came from the East Coast and chose to live and work in Berkeley. I was attracted by its vibrant arts community that encompassed many ethnic and artistic traditions. My work as a ceramic sculptor connects me with all the cultures of human history that have used clay to fashion vessels for everyday use, for religious ritual and for art. For me there is something magical and mesmerizing about reaching into the earth, pulling forth clay and spinning it on a wheel to form it into a vessel or a sculpture. The world around me ceases to exist and my whole self is focused on forming the mass of clay into cylinders, spheres and discs that are thrown or hand-built, shaped, decorated, glazed and fired. I feel a kinship with all the potters throughout the ages, whether from ancient or modern Japan, India, Melanesia, Brittany or the Mediterranean cultures. Living in Berkeley has provided an ongoing source of stimulation, with all the strands of world culture that surround and inspire me on a daily basis.

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