Lee Middleman

In my signature work, I create classic forms with surface textures that give the work energy and vitality. I seek to create patterns and textures that explore the organic interplay between order and randomness as found in Nature. The result is art that is both pleasing and alive.

The tactile feel and visual look of surface textures are essential to my pieces. I create textures by deeply impressing patterns into thrown cylinders. Then, working from the inside only, I expand the cylinder to create the final form. This technique allows the pattern to evolve as the clay twists and expands. As the pattern adjusts to the shape and function of the vessel, it becomes reflective of nature’s adaptation to form.

My glazing process enhances the natural aesthetic of order and randomness. Thinly glazed surfaces highlight the macropatterns and reveal the stoneware clay’s micro-texture created during the expansion process. I use multiple glazes to intensify the dynamic tension in these surfaces. Although functional, my work is above all decorative. The work is intended to intrigue the eye and demands to be touched.