Salmon Ceramics

These pages are an online catalogue which show a range of my ceramic work, both old & new. The site will be updated at intervals as new work is created.There are 3 main sections – Ornamental, Product & Sculptural – featuring pieces which are representitive of my work.I very much hope you will enjoy looking through these pages and if you wish to view my work in person, please contact me to arrange a viewing at my studio.Stephen Salmon
October 2008

Manifesto“Artyfacts – Purpose: Unknown; Origin: Unknown”

Over the years of making ceramics, I have developed a love of medieval arms and armour, along with objects of religious devotion from the same period. I have made numerous pieces, ranging from small sculptures to large uplighters & candle wall-torches which, I hope, express something of those dark times in European history
In the background, there has always been my passion for things astronimical, futuristic and technological. In my series “Purpose: Unknown; Origin: Unknown” I have sought to give my work the impression of recently-discovered ancient artifacts, perhaps technological devices or objects used in various unknown rituals, their exact origin and purpose left to the speculation and imagination of the observer. This, for me, brings together both the ancient and the futuristic into the present, indicating the three periods of time. Visions of our universe have also served to inspire me greatly, along with humanity’s efforts to reach out and explore the so-called ‘final frontier’: The barren, yet beautiful landscapes of the Moon; the majesty and mystery of our other planetary neighbours; the magnificent forms and miriad colours of galaxies and nebulae. The works are made through a combination of hand-building techniques with some impressed and stippled surface decoration. I utilise grogged stoneware clay bodies, matt stoneware glazes & colouring oxides on most pieces to achieve an 'earthy', just-excavated look, to give the work the appearance of having been eroded over time and thus, conjuring a sense of quiet mystery. On others, I use a selection of earthenware industrial glazes which I find produce the ‘special effects’ I am looking for.Stephen Salmon
October 2008

Discovered Artefacts – Exhibition of Ceramics
Pulkra, 293 Fulham Road, SW10 9PZNewspaper Review by George Saviddes For Parikiaki Greek newspaper (English Section) Stephen Salmon is a talented and a very promising artist whose small but perfectly crafted ceramics exhibition features some highly original pieces of work. His love for medieval arms, armour and objects of religious devotion from the same period are evident influences in his work.

He has a passion for things astronomical, futuristic and technological and his small sculptures and candle wall-torches express something of those dark times in European history. His work is simple but striking and his objects have great depth and appear to be timeless.ONE MAN SHOWS

04 Feb 2008 – (ongoing)
Discovered Artefacts
Pulkra Gallery
283 Fulham Road London SW10 9PZ

12-15 July 2006
New Collections
Troubadour Gallery
263-267 Old Brompton Road London SW5 9JA

Credits and Acknowledgements

Each of us, if we are fortunate enough, has one or more individuals who have positively influenced our growth and development in our childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Rather than the members of one’s closer family who, normally, are naturally most concerned for us, I refer to those of our extended family, our friends and, perhaps, one or two ‘special’ or ‘favourite’ teachers in school or college, and in life.

I regard myself as having been very fortunate indeed in this respect and so, on this page, I should like to acknowledge those who have been there to help me, who have there to help guide me, especially when my steps were faltering and I could have so very easily stumbled and fallen onto paths far less happy than those one I have trodden until now. These persons may also be known in Japanese Buddhist terminology as
shoten zenjin, or ‘benevolent and protective entities’. Having said that, however, there are, I suspect, far too many to name individually here, also because there have been those who have cared for my welfare, from near and from afar, in the background, so to speak, quiet and modest, wishing only for my wellbeing and happiness, without seeking personal public praise or great reward.  For those people who may read this, you will recognise who you are and, hopefully, will know that I am a better person than I might otherwise have been but for the caring action you took. To all of you, I extend my most heartfelt gratitude here, even if I have not expressed the same to you personally before. Indeed, there will be some who are no longer living and so will never get to read these, my dear father, Christopher and my dear mother, Nella, to name but two. However, I am sure that, because of our deep connection, they feel what I feel, and thus understand my warm gratitude and respect toward them.

However, I should like to mention a few people to whom I am especially grateful; for their love, their friendship, their patient and compassionate guidance:

Roy Gluckstein

Roger & Erika Salmon

Jeremy Salmon

Jean Mortimer (my original pottery teacher at school, without whom I may never have discovered a love of making things in clay).

Paul Gray (of Wandsworth Adult College, who gave me the essential opportunity and encouragement to stay and improve my ceramic skills for long after I had completed the Ceramics Diploma course and before I had gained enough confidence to  finally apply to do an MA in Ceramics at the University of the Arts at Camberwell).

Rita (Di Santo), my loving wife since 2001, for all her caring support, encouragement and example.

Finally, I should like to single out for most special mention the person who has been my Sensei (jap. ‘teacher’) and ‘mentor in life’ these last 20 years, from whom I have learnt – and, hopefully, continue to learn - so much, every day, and to whom I owe an eternal debt of gratitude: His name is
Daisaku Ikeda, the President of Soka Gakkai International (SGI) ('Value Creating Society'), a foremost thinker, philosopher, poet and humanistic educator of this age. I have neither sufficient words nor space here to describe the importance of this truly great human being, or to describe the enormity of his compassion, wisdom and determination for the happiness of all humanity, both now and long into the distant future. There are many quotes from his writings that I would wish to share with you in these pages (see Inspirations (link) page), but for reasons of available space, I have had to be selective.

Along with my beloved Sensei, I also proffer my immense thanks to my ‘comrades in faith’, my fellow practitioners of
Nichiren Daishonin’s Buddhism in the SGI, who have made such incredible efforts to support and encourage my faith over the years and who have helped me to become as happy as I am today.

Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

Stephen Salmon
April 2008

The Creative Life (extract)

You must never slacken in your efforts to build new lives for yourselves. Creativeness means pushing open the heavy door to life.  This is not an easy struggle. Indeed, it may be the hardest task in the world.  For opening the door to your own life is more difficult than opening the doors to the mysteries of the Universe. But the act of opening your door vindicates your existence as a human being and makes life worth living.  No-one is lonelier or unhappier than the person who does not know the pure joy of creating a life for himself. To be human is not merely to stand erect and manifest reason and intellect:  To be human in the full sense of the word is to lead a creative life.  The fight to create a new life is a truly wonderful thing, revealing radiant wisdom, the light of intuition that leads to an understanding of the Universe, the strong will of justice and a determination to challenge all attacking evils, the compassion that enables you to take upon yourself the sorrows of others, and a sense of union with the energy of compassion gushing forth from the cosmic source of life and creating an ecstatic rhythm in the lives of all men.  As you challenge adversity and polish the jewel that is life, you will learn to walk the supreme pathway of true humanity.  He who leads a creative life from the present into the future will stand in the vanguard of history.  I think of this flowering of the creative life as the human revolution that is your mission now and throughout your lives.

Daisaku Ikeda, President, Soka Gakkai International

A Poem

Until one is committed, there is hesitancy,

The chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.

Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there

Is one elementary truth - ignorance of which kills

Countless ideas and splendid plans:

That the moment one definitely commits oneself,

Then Providence moves too.

All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred.

A whole stream of events issue from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.

Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.

Boldness has genius, power and imagination in it.

Begin it now.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe / William Hutchinson Murray

A Presidential Opinion

 “It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”

Theodore Roosevelt, US President

A Poem

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented & fabulous?

Actually, who are we NOT to be?...

Your playing small doesn't serve the world.

There's nothing enlightened about shrinking

So that other people won't feel insecure around you...

And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,

Our presence automatically liberates others…

Marianne Williamson

Sites of Interest

British Interplanetary Society (BIS)

Camberwell College Of Art London

David Robinson, 3D spacecraft modeller/artist

London Potters

Pulkra Wellbeing For Body & Spirit

Soka Gakkai International UK (SGI-UK)

Wandsworth Adult College adulteducation3.asp