balance as flow

I’m demonstrating at Art in Action this week, and I’ve been thinking about the Ceramic Tent’s theme of “balance”.

Wave breaking For me, the interesting balance is dynamic equilibrium, much more part of life than something static. When time becomes part of the equations things get interesting – whether in physics or biology or organisational design. And of course in throwing pots..

Blue thrown porcelain plate

There’s something about shaping porcelain in motion, in rotation, that’s very fundamental. It’s a bit like sailing a boat, I think, about a balance of opposing forces. It looks still, but is actually dynamic.

Dinghy sailing in still breeze

Nick Rogers & Chris Grube. Credit Richard Langon, Skandia Team GBR

And I think this leads to a very different aesthetic. Maybe like handling a sailing boat it’s a partnership with natural forces rather than an attempt to control them. A sailing boat doesn’t look like a tanker. A kind of minimalist aesthetic is enforced – although this might be a stretch – like the best, “elegant” solutions of science and engineering.

I’d like to also add that this has value because it “treads lightly on the earth”, it’s a good use of resources, but this might be a stretch too!

One response to “balance as flow

  1. Balance is an interesting term. I always think of ‘centering’ myself when i’m working with a bit of clay. Focusing in and in and in.Then again I’ve never used a wheel!

    Just wanted to let you know too that I’ve nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award (check it here: ). You don’t have to do anything with it if you don’t feel like it, but I just wanted to acknowledge some people on here who have blogs I enjoy reading, which includes yourself 🙂


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