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John Pollex

The painterly quality of John Pollex ceramics is outstanding and whilst he says that he was influenced by painters such as Howard Hodgkin, Patrick Heron and Ben Nicholson he is nevertheless an original and distinctive maker. The colour combinations and the evident freedom of application confirm his status in the ceramic sector as well as his reputation for three-dimensional abstraction.
Apart from his regard for the aforementioned painters, Pollex’s work often includes references to his interest in Zen Buddhism, in particular the immediacy of brush strokes in Zen calligraphy.
One of the interesting aspects of John’s history is that until the 1980’s he was a respected maker of traditional slipware. In 1981 he was invited to take part in a lecture tour of New Zealand with the contemporary American ceramicist Don Reitz. The bold use of colour in the work of Reitz excited him – compared with the muted tones of celadons, tenmokus and honey glazes back in Britain. It was at that point that his work took a completely different direction.
Pollex is often asked why he never paints in the conventional manner. He says that he has always been a potter who enjoys what he does and he still feels there is much more to discover in the world of ceramics.