Steve Harrison

(1952 – )

Natural sericite porcelain stone, Arita, Japan

Not on display
Further information

Steve Harrison’s ceramics take simple forms - specifically bowls and cups as a vehicle through which to articulate concerns around ceramic history, the environment, and a way of life based upon trying to touch the ground lightly. His research into kiln and clay technology has led him to a simplification of production and sourcing of materials that strips ceramics back to its origins.

His important series of bowls known as '5 stones' are made from the five naturally occurring sources of porcelain in the world: Jingdezhen, China; Yanggu, Korea; Arita, Japan; Cornwall, UK and Mittagong, Australia. Harrison's investigations into these sources stretch over 15 years, from 2002 to 2017. He is interested in the origins of these porcelain sources, specifically centred around a rock called serecite, which is ground and processed into a clay body without additives. It is this sourcing and pressing, and the making of the work near the source which is of interest to Harrison. Workng on the idea of sustainability, works are made from a 50-kilometre-wide palette of materials, not only for clay and glaze materials such as local rocks, shales, gravels and ash, but also the wood that fires the kiln.

Steve Harrison said: ‘ This is simply one of the most elegant and perfect pieces I ever made. It is greatly understated: perfect form, perfect glaze, perfect whiteness, and perfect translucency.’ This bowl was made on the southern Japanese island of Kyushu, in the village of Arita, in the KRG studio using the Coda family sericite body.

Natural sericite porcelain stone, Japanese studio standard glaze
8.5 x 13.2 x 13.2 cm
Signature & date

Signed ‘SH’, impressed seal. Not dated.

Vicki Grima Ceramics Fund and Mollie Douglas Bequest Fund 2020
Accession number
© Steve Harrison