The man behind the eyes.
If you’re a longtime friend of Consort, then you’re probably familiar with the works of ceramicist Matthew Ward and his incredibly compelling collection of vases, platters, and bowls. His works are perennial favorites around these parts because they appear at once fantastical, but also clearly grounded in patient process.
We figured it was about time we got acquainted with Matthew on a more personal level, so we picked his brain with our now-famous "getting to know you" questionnaire. In doing so, we learned that not only is he a fiend for mangos but, as we suspected, there’s a wealth of thought, patience, and care poured into each of his handcrafted pieces.
Keep reading for a tour of his incredibly-photogenic studio, a glimpse at the brains behind the craft, and you opportunity to add an original Matthew Ward to your collection.
Consort: How did you get started in art?
M: Both my parents were artists, so growing up I was surrounded by art and creativity was always encouraged.
C: Why did you choose your medium?
M: Sorta fell into it. My background is in painting and sculpture, I was immediately attracted to ceramics as it was a perfect marriage of both my artistic sensibilities.
C: What is the most challenging part about working with your medium?
M: Most challenging part of ceramics is the “wait.” It’s that time when all the work is finished and in the kiln, firing, and all the energy and time that you’ve committed to the work is now in the hands of the kiln, and you anxiously wait for its results.
C: What is your creative process like?
M: My process can be easily be described as multitasking. There are a lot of steps involved in my process of making works. I look at my work with two sets of eyes, both artistic and surgical. There are times that are tedious and need full attention on detail and times when there is a more expressive and free nature.
C: How has your style changed over the years?
M: In terms of style, I believe my work has matured through the years and has stayed true to my own personal aesthetics. Of course there are moments when things have affected and changed my influence, it’s hard to tell. I do know that my confidence and trust for myself has changed and that has come with time and continued studio practice.
Black Fleur Bowl by Matthew Ward Studio ($265)Green Felix Totem Vase by Matthew Ward ($495)
C: What do you believe is a key element in creating a good composition?
M: When I am making work, composing for me is really an open dialogue between the work and myself. When I am creating work I strive for a good balance and effortlessness in the work. A good composition is one that looks intentional.
C: Who are some of the people or what are some time periods that influence your work?
M: Too many! There are so many influential works and things in the world, I always try to remain open and free to new ideas and concepts.
C: What food, drink, song inspires you?
M: Favorite song on current rotation: That Summer Feeling by Jonathan Richman. Favorite food: mangos.
C: What was your first car?
M: First car was actually a vintage moped.
C: When was your first kiss?
M: First kiss outside the school playground, Breadloaf Mountain, Vermont. Summer love.
C: What was your last phone call?
M: Last phone call, business related, nothing sassy.
C: What was your last meal?
M: Korean ramen.
C: What was the Last Emoji you used?
M: Bag of money; most used emoji is the thought cloud.
C: When and where was your last vacation?
M: Entire last summer in Upstate NY.
Photos: Matthew Ward