Ian Hazard-BillMendocino, California

Red Lodge Clay Center – Short-Term Resident  2023

Ian Hazard-Bill was born and raised in Marin County. He started working in clay in high school and has continued since. He has a B.A. in Ceramics and Community-based Sustainability from The Evergreen State College. He has worked as an apprentice to Seth Cardew in Spain, an Artist in Residence at the Cub Creek Foundation, studio manager at Sugar Maples Center for the Arts, as the assistant to the Director at Cub Creek Foundation, and as an Artist in Residence at the Mendocino Art Center. He is currently the Ceramics Program Coordinator at the Mendocino Art Center. He makes his work on the wheel, and with a unique slab-building technique and fires his work in wood or salt/soda kilns. He also teaches making and firing workshops.

When Maker and Material reciprocate one another and the forces of Nature; harmony and chaos, are brought to dance, Beauty is born. Working with clay is a personal moment of awe and a patient, determined, retracing toward Beauty. Between the object and the person also, is reciprocity, when engaged together they are vessels of Nourishment. That thought is what holds my hands holding the clay, all becoming vessels sharing Nourishment- hold and be held in awe.

My pots are sculptural celebrations of the relational state they exist in; participant, object, and subject united in an action. I hope these objects act as invitations to renew our relationship to what nourishes us and to what we choose to nourish. Textures are impressions of the outer world, alterations call attention to the boundaries of inner space, and materials are chosen for practical, aesthetic, and symbolic values.

I love the way a wood-fired kiln paints. The ash, coals, and heat accumulated in the kiln over many days and nights of steady stoking transform the clay’s surface. Pieces fired in this way have a depth and spontaneity to them that will still surprise and delight even after years of use.