I have been making pots since 1976 and in Seagrove, NC since 1990. Although my initial focus was on slab and coil built bottles and vases, I eventually became enthralled with pots for the kitchen, for serving and dining, which meant transitioning to the potter's wheel. Throwing on the wheel has taken lots of practice and diligence, and watching others with different skill sets, adopting from them what I found useful, and discarding what wasn't. I seldom tire of the process, and am still fascinated by the potential for using my hands to create tasteful objects in which to prepare food, serve and dine from.
Glazes and firing
My glaze palette is primarily mattes, high alumina formulations that absorb light rather than reflect it, contrasted with unglazed areas, and splashed with high gloss glazes, often copper reds. I fire them in a 65 cu. ft. car kiln (in a reduction atmosphere), one I built in 1993. My pots are microwave and dishwasher safe, and safe to use in the oven provided the oven is not preheated.
My inspirations come from objects I enjoy using, or find visually pleasing, and I have always been fascinated with containers. For me it's all about line, shape, space, color, and texture, and form following function. My hope is that my pots occupy their spaces well. I also find inspiration in the works of all the potters who derive(d) their ideas of what makes up a good pot from the Hamada, Leach, Cardew, Shimaoka, and Casson influences.
My pots may be purchased here in Seagrove at my studio on Fork Creek Mill Rd; at Seagrove Creations right off of Exit 61 on Interstate 73/74/220; at Pea Island Gallery in Salvo, NC; at Seagrove Pottery in Cary, NC; and at NC Crafts Gallery in Carrboro, NC.
I sometimes make limited editions and make these pieces available online on my square store at mkt.com/tom-gray-pottery.
Tom Gray Pottery-handmade pots for the arts, acts and rituals of food preparation, serving and dining.