Odyssey Center for Ceramic Arts

 

Sara Ballek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Much of what I create is tied within the parameters of functional pottery. I find inspiration in new forms natural and manmade, organic and geometric. I am moved by the contrast of forms, colors, space, light and feelings that I experience in fresh surroundings.

In the process of thinking, when focusing on utilitarian forms, it can be difficult to make a plan, but much simpler to design a purpose. There is an attraction to repetition, but the response is through the process rather than the outcome. I find my work to share similarities as it also shares differences. With the combination of techniques I incorporate in my work through tactile expression, each form holds its own unique qualities.

I work with a number of methods and processes to create functional forms. Between throwing and hand building, I alter each form with pinching the clay while it is still in a malleable state. Once the form is complete, I visually dissect it. I then break up the piece by applying organic shapes, a spectrum of colors, and various lines to create contrast throughout the piece and a dialogue within the body of work.

Using a handmade form in a daily ritual is a unique experience. There is something captured in those moments that radiate a connection between the user, the object, and even the maker. But those moments are only temporary, until the possibility of “next time”.


Sara Ballek was born and raised in the North West suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. From early on she loved to stay busy exploring the world of art and the endless possibilities in various materials and forms. Sara went on to earning her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Ceramics from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale in 2016. She has an extensive background in drawing and painting and has experience working with other creative 3D material as well.

Sara is currently living in Asheville, North Carolina as a Resident Artist and full time maker and educator at Odyssey Clayworks. She works with a number of methods and processes to create functional forms. Between throwing and hand building, she alters each form with pinching the clay while it is still in a malleable state. She likes to break up the piece by applying shapes, a spectrum of colors, patterns, and various lines to create contrast throughout the piece and a dialogue within the body of work.