My pots are direct expressions of personal influences founded in the aesthetics of utility and decoration. I am fascinated with how these two elements collaborate to make a beautiful functional object. My sources range from abstract painting, historical ceramics, contemporary design, textile patterns and poetry. The results of these influences are not literal translations, but instead, intuitive combinations of decorative motifs and utilitarian forms.
In making each piece I am just as concerned with how a hand might touch the surface as how the eye might travel its contours or indulge in a moment of decoration. Equally important is that they are used in the home, at mealtimes, or for any purpose that asserts their role as accessories of service. Through these fundamental elements, each object might serve the purpose of expression within the context of utility.
Sean O’Connell is a studio potter in Helena, MT and currently the 2011- 2012 Matsutani Fellow at the Archie Bray Foundation. He earned his BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2001 and his MFA from the School for American Crafts/ Rochester Institute of Technology in 2009. Until recently, he and his spouse lived in Rochester, NY where he held several teaching positions at local colleges.
Sean exhibits his work nationally, contributes to ceramic art publications, and conducts workshops and lectures around the country. In addition he was the 2009 Salad Day’s Artist-in-Residence at Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, ME.