My name is Richard Ballantyne, I started my artist career at Bradford College of Art, where I studied as an interior designer prior to starting work as such for Samuel Smiths Brewery in Tadcaster.
“Being not only a pyromaniac but also a bit of a magpie, often my work incorporates found objects in the sculpture – from ash from Mount St Helens in a glaze to stones washed on the beach as plinths – telling everyone its own story”.
After a spell of destroying the character of a multitude of pubs and clubs in the north of England I returned to university at Bretton Hall to retrain as a teacher. I then went into teaching in secondary schools – first Yorkshire then Northamptonshire.
My first teaching job I was put in charge of a ceramics department and so started at evening class to keep one step ahead of the children; so started a lifetime love affair with the material.
In 2003 I left full-time teaching and returned to university to complete a degree in glass and ceramics at High Wycombe and now am trying to make a full-time living as a ceramic artist with a little lecturing at High Wycombe University and also Thames Valley University.
My ceramics are as varied as the British climate – work being both sculptural and functional, life size to miniature-Raku to high fired porcelain.