Walter Keeler

The pottery tradition is at the heart of all my work. Pottery for use has been central to all settled human communities. Seldom merely functional, it has been a vehicle for expression and the fulfilment of a delight in the pleasure of handling a sensual and incredibly versatile material; the useful bound up with the intellect and the imagination.

I discovered pottery as a boy, becoming intimate with fragments of ancient pots picked up on the beaches of the Thames in London. They infiltrated my mind and my senses, giving me an insight to the syntax of thrown pottery; a sense of what is authentic, which I only understood as I gained experience in the craft.
 
So my work is informed by my passion for pots from the past, but also by making and firing, and the world and times in which I live. Sometimes I make simple useful things like mugs or jugs, on other occasions my work is less straightforward, making demands, even challenging the user to negotiate with an unexpected pot to do an ordinary job. I hope my pottery brings with its seriousness, some humour and sensual pleasure.

People choose most particularly the mug to use for themselves or a friend, at a time of stress or celebration. The mug an essential ingredient in a ritual in which it is brought to the lips and embraced by the hands, a unique degree of intimacy between a maker and his client.

Born 1942, London

Education
1994-2002 Professor of Ceramics UWE Bristol
1958-1963 NDD Pottery, Harrow School of Art

Exhibitions
2008 Walter Keeler, An Artistís Selection, Glyn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea.
Arts Council of Wales, Creative Wales Major Award, to enable time for creative development.
2007 Welsh Artist of the Year, presentation St Davidís Hall, Cardiff
Candover Gallery, Alresford, Hants. Solo
Aberystwyth Arts Centre, solo
2006 To Hold, Farmleigh Gallery, Dublin (catalogue)
Pots for Flowers, solo, Gallery Nine, Bath
2005-2007  Table Manners, Crafts Council touring exhibiton
2005  Functional Form Now, Galerie Besson, London
2004-2006  Solo exhibition, with retrospective and book, touring UK, Leicester City Gallery & The Gallery Ruthin Craft Centre collaboration.
2004 National Eisteddfod, exhibition and Gold Medal winner, Newport
2002 Contemporary Ceramics, London, solo
2001 Jerwood Shortlist Exhibition, Crafts Council Gallery, London
2000 Candover Gallery, Hampshire, solo
1999 Contemporary Applied Arts, London, solo
1998 Galerie Marianne Heller, Heidelberg, solo
1995 Rufford Craft Centre, solo with retrospective
1993 Leeds City Art Gallery, solo
1991 Colours of Earth, The British Council, Touring India
1989 Contemporary Applied Arts, London, solo

Public Collections
Victoria & Albert Museum
The Fitzwilliam Museum
The Crafts Council
The National Museum of Wales
Stoke-on-Trent City Museum
MIMA (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art)
American Craft Museum, New York
Los Angeles Museum of Art
Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo
National Museum of Sweden

 

Exhibitions

Archive

2008

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