Joseph Bennion is a ceramist and ceramic entrepreneur. He studied at Brigham Young University where he met his wife, painter Lee Udall Bennion. Together they operate the Horseshoe Mountain Pottery in Spring City, Utah. In recent years he has focused more on creating and selling practical pottery for the home, rather than travelling to promote his artwork.
1980, Tuscarora Pottery School. 1982, BFA Ceramics Brigham Young University. 1986, MFA Ceramics Brigham Young University.
I enjoy making pottery by hand on a foot powered treadle wheel. The physical involvement places me deeper in the process. The gentle sound of the wheel and the soft resistance of the clay in my hand are at once comforting and pleasant. Pleasure is an important element of our life in this world. It gives meaning and balance to the confusion, pain and sorrow we encounter here. I hope that as people take my pottery in hand and raise it to their lips they will recognize some the experience I have had in making it and will find pleasure of their own in use. I am fascinated with the idea that we are the children of a benevolent creator. The influences that most powerfully shape who we are seem to be located in the household and family. I want my pottery to be there and to promote and influence that growth, however small it's part may be. The family dinner table is sacred space and the venue of first choice for my pottery. I prefer domestic pottery that is plain, quiet and understated. I try to make pots that will play in the background, that speak gently but carry a great deal of information to those willing to wait and listen. I love the kinds of surfaces derived from wood firing and salt glazing processes. In the case of the wood fired kiln I also enjoy the deeper involvement with process that the stoking of the kiln affords me. I love to sit with a kiln late at night and listen to the wood popping and the quiet sounds of the draft.
1994, Demonstrating Artist, NCECA Confrence, New Orleans, LA.
1991, Emerging Talent, NCECA Conference, Tempe, AZ.
1990, NEA Fellowship Grant