Katherine Mahoney

I’m lucky enough to have a studio tucked away at the bottom of my Sydney garden, a wooden cabin that houses my wheels and glazes. There, among tranquil, leafy surrounds, I create my hand-thrown ceramics. The shelves are bustling with pots at all stages of the making process, clambering for my attention. My kiln hums away in a separate tin shed. It gets so warm and cosy on firing days – it’s the place to be in winter!

I first fell in love with ceramics back in 1974, when I went to visit my brother who was working at a pottery studio in Kent, England. I adored everything about it: the stacks of pots, the wheels, the clay covered floor and tightly packed kilns – ribbons of trimmed clay skimming off leather-hard pots.

I began an apprenticeship at Cranbrook Station Pottery and later managed one of their branches, before opening a pottery studio of my own with my brother, producing a range of tableware.

Later, I moved to Hong Kong and became fascinated by the rich history of Asian ceramics. It was there that I began exhibiting one-off pieces, gaining an international reputation for my work and judging exhibitions, such as the Hong Kong Biennial. I also began teaching pottery classes at a number of respected institutions including the Hong Kong Polytechnic, the Hong Kong Museum of Art and for the Education Department.

Since moving to Australia in the nineties, I’ve continued to make one-off wheel-thrown pieces, alongside more sculptural forms. Tableware remains my primary preoccupation and I enjoy creating bespoke pieces for restaurants, designers, galleries and individuals that elevate the everyday.”