Artist: Daniel Garretson

Some great grey pots for a great grey day. Made by Daniel Garretson.

Artist’s Bio
Raised in both Australia and the United States, I became interested in pottery while studying philosophy at the University of Wollongong in Australia. Becoming ever more dissatisfied with intellectual answers to philosophical questions, I began engaging these issues on a practical level, an approach that emphasized direct experience of life. Finding a natural ally in Asian philosophy and religion, I became increasingly attracted to Chan Buddhism and its relationship to culture and society. Of particular interest was the Japanese tea ceremony, the ceramic vessels associated with this ritual, and the lives of the craftsmen who created these vessels. After completing my undergraduate degree I returned to the United States to learn to make pots. After completing a three-year apprenticeship with Mark Shapiro last fall, I am working with several potters before beginning a year long residency at the Red Lodge Clay center in September.

Artist’s Statement
Throughout the making process I like to keep things simple–taking things as they come and accepting them for what they are. I am not interested in making beautiful pots, useful pots, or important pots– these judgments I find best left to others. I am focused instead on openly accepting the process of making, thereby allowing this process to express its nature with a sense of ease and spontaneously.

Ideas relating to patterns play a central role in the way I reflect on my work. How various patterns intermingle and overlap fascinate and intrigue me. Physical patterns, social and cultural patterns, patterns of thought and behavior, and historical patterns are all tools I use to think about my work in different ways. This reflection ultimately leads to a fresh engagement with the clay thereby stimulating new ideas and uncovering previously unseen possibilities.

Now his is a making philosophy I can respect in wonder and try to take into my own studio especially in the intense months of making to come. My mind is quiet when I throw my body attentive but at ease. It is the process of making that keeps calling me back after the back aches and sleepless nights. I see meaning in making. Daniel Garretson sees it too and has something special going on. You can buy these forms from Red Lodge Clay Center in the states.


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