Helen Marton

In my contemporary ceramic work, I probe the past and respond to ancient objects. My interest in Archaeology extends into many cultures. I have travelled throughout Indonesia and Asia, Europe and Eastern Europe examining live crafts, in particular traditional weaving and pottery production. Visiting museum collections and examining tools, weapons and Bronze Age artefacts from many cultures has further fuelled my fascination for this ‘cross fertilisation’ between types of materials and the root of any shared influence for both design and decoration. I am fascinated by the questions that this raises when we see similarities in technique and design. Is it a case of cultural dissemination and trade or an example of parallel evolution?

As a human animal and self-confessed craft anthropologist, I manifest works driven from investigations into our fundamental drives and needs; archaeology and anthropology when relating to crafts often map cultural attitudes towards protection, consumption, reproduction and systems of belief. I make predominantly ceramic works, occasionally with textile, metal, and found objects. Much of the work is pierced literally and metaphorically, freezing the moment and making reference to how we comprehend our world, categorise, organise and try to control our environment.

My work focuses particularly upon borrowing and abstracting meaning and significance from both domestic and ritual objects in order to create powerful contemporary cultural indicators, future relics, and significators. I continue to crave and investigate how we make sense of our world and communicate visually.

Personal Information

I am extremely fortunate to be an educator and ceramic artist, living near Tintagel in North Cornwall and working in Falmouth, South Cornwall. I spend a good deal of time in my little Smart car bombing around between the two locations. I deem this to be very valuable gestation time.

My private passion and inspiration is scuba diving. I love to be in the blue silence supported and surrounded by ocean. As an advanced diver qualified to reach depths of 30+metres, I have experienced some unforgettably euphoric moments both in the silent company of some of the great pelagic inhabitants such as shark and giant Manta and the Pigmy Seahorse, barely bigger than a grain of rice.