Martin Harman

Artist Statement

About Martin
I am a British artist based in Bristol UK, creating one-off surreal ceramic sculpture, drawings and paintings.

Why am I creating art?
Creating art is what it means to be human, to imagine and create something I have not seen before and bring it into the world to exist. As humans we have the potential to dream and turn ideas into reality. I want to live in a world were creativity thrives and is apart of peoples lives. I want to create art that liberates the imagination.

What is my purpose?
My artistic purpose is to create art that seeks to evoke curiosity. It is up to the viewer to explore their imagination and make decisions about what they are seeing. The ideas behind my artworks has to resonate with me and at times it can be interchangeable with my own experience. I want to communicate a fascination for the unknown as life is full of questions.

The Historic English Heritage monument Stonehenge helped me to develop this way of thinking. To this day its purpose and meaning still largely remains unknown. It forces myself to be curious, to learn anew and reflect upon my existence.

I do not intend to replicate its presence in any way but use this as a foundation to generate ideas around imagination, possibility and curiosity.

The making process of my ceramic sculptures originates from using the potter’s wheel. Traditionally the wheel is seen as a tool to create pots. However, for me I use it to create shapes that I then assemble together to create sculpture.

— Martin Harman

Bio

I was introduced to clay whilst studying at school. I perused an interest in this material as I liked working from a formal and abstract approach. For me clay is an expressive medium as it has the possibility to be transformed into anything. Clay could record and connect to my emotion and experience of the world around me as. From this I have also branched out into using 2d mediums such as painting, drawing and collage. I found this to be another way to express ideas and sometimes these two mediums can relate to each other.

I studied my BA in Three-Dimensional Design Ceramics at the University for the Creative Arts Farnham UK (2010). I then studied an MA in Ceramics at Cardiff School of Art and Design UK (2012).

I was awarded The Bristol First Collective who purchased my sculpture Juxtaposed at the 161st Annual Open Exhibition at the Royal West of England Academy UK (2014).

My ceramic sculptures have been shown in exhibitions in the UK and internationally such as Slovenia, Austria, Romania, Germany, Hungary, Kenya, Denmark, South Korea, China, Taiwan and Australia. Notable exhibitions include: Bath society of artists 114th Annual Open Exhibition Victoria Art Gallery Bath UK (2019) and Creekside Open A.P.T Gallery London UK (2017).

My ceramic sculptures have also been shown in Symposium’s and Biennale’s. Notable ones include: Symposium Exhibition at the Kapolna Gallery International Ceramics Studio Kecskemét Hungary (2019) and Taiwan Ceramics Biennale New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum Taiwan (2016).

I have also been an invited guest to attend residencies: Symposium at the International Ceramics Studio Kecskemét Hungary (2019) and XI International Ceramics Symposium Römhild Glücksburg Castle Römhild Germany (2018).

My ceramic sculpture is also in public collections internationally such as the International Ceramics Studio Kecskemét Hungary, Ariana Museum Geneva Switzerland and The National Museum of Slovenia. My artworks has also been purchased by private collectors both in the UK and Internationally.

The underlying concern of my work is to keep developing my skill, process and explore new possibilities.

— Martin Harman