A painter by inclination, Barry’s ceramics are preceded by paintings in watercolour or gouache, often made in the open air, where he is inspired by the light and patterns in the sky and the farms and fields visible from his home. Changing surroundings, such as those experienced on a moving train, also inform his work. These paintings are then reworked into larger, more abstract, oil paintings and ultimately lead to the ceramics, which he creates in red clay with coloured slips. He works intuitively and energetically and, because the true colours of the pieces only emerge after firing, there is always an element of chance in his work, which retains its spontaneity and freshness. Having been educated at Barnfield College, Luton Barry was a ceramics graduate of Harrow (University of Westminster), here he achieved a first class honours degree. He then spent a year as an assistant in Edmund de Waal’s studio and quickly established a reputation for his distinctive and poetic individual pots.
Date: April 29, 2015