Surreal Ceramic Sculptures Capture Bountiful Beauty and Spectacular Shapes Found in Nature

Carol Long Pottery

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Ceramic artist Carol Long captures the delicate intricacy of nature in her detailed ceramic sculptures. Her organic forms with their twisting spouts and swirling handles often take the shape of insects and wildlife. And if not, the vessels are sure to have an homage to the spectacularity of flora and fauna somewhere on their surfaces. Each ornate piece is painstakingly crafted by hand, whether they’re thrown on the wheel or she’s building them from slabs and extrusions.

Then comes the meticulous molding and shaping of the piece into its final shape, dotted with complex patterns of ornamentation that mimic those naturally occurring in nature. Everything from butterfly wings and birds to caterpillars and chrysalides perch on Long’s ceramic art. “Most of my forms start with a thrown piece,” Long tells My Modern Met. “I love to push forms to look fluid, extend handles into space, slip trail and glaze surface designs to bring the entire piece together. It’s low tech and time-consuming.”

When she is finished sculpting them and they’ve completely dried, each piece is then glazed and fired to cone 5. At that setting, the kiln reaches temperatures of over 2,100 degrees Fahrenheit; and what was once soft, malleable clay is solidified into its final configuration. “But,” the artist explains, “then I spend a lot of time dirtying them up to look antiqued and look like they were in a magical atmospheric firing.”

Long’s ceramic vessels, whether towering vases or small lidded bowls, manage to capture the fluidity and expressiveness of the medium with their curving lines and ripping handles and bases. The textured works of art almost take on a life of their own, like whimsical creatures spawned from nature and the artist’s own hands of creation.

Scroll down to see images of Long’s gorgeous ceramic sculptures. For more from the artist, find her on Facebook and Instagram. Her pottery is also available for purchase on Etsy.

Ceramic artist Carol Long creates detailed ceramic sculptures that capture the beauty of nature.

Handmade Ceramic Art SculpturesCarol Long PotteryHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesCarol Long Pottery

Every kind of flora and fauna finds its way into her ceramic sculptures.

Carol Long PotteryHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesCarol Long PotteryCarol Long PotteryCarol Long Pottery

Each intricate masterpiece is meticulously handcrafted from raw clay, and the final results are stunning.

Handmade Ceramic Art SculpturesHandmade Ceramic Art SculpturesCarol Long PotteryCarol Long PotteryCarol Long PotteryCarol Long PotteryCarol Long Pottery: Website | Instagram | Facebook | Etsy

My Modern Met granted permission to use photos by Carol Long Pottery.

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Arnesia Young

Arnesia Young is a contributing writer for My Modern Met and an aspiring art historian. She holds a BA in Art History and Curatorial Studies with a minor in Design from Brigham Young University. With a love and passion for the arts, culture, and all things creative, she finds herself intrigued by the creative process and is constantly seeking new ways to explore and understand it.
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