Terry Palmer

Clay / Lafayette, LA / Master Craftsman

Artist Statement

All of my ceramic art is hand built and one of a kind. I may fire by the oxidation method or reduction method (Raku). I prefer the Raku method but that's not always possible. I'm constantly searching out items to embellish my pieces with.


My background is graphic arts, mostly 2-D so my sculpture is mainly for me, a 3-D outlet that lets me escape the confines of my every day work and express myself without the necessary boundaries of my profession.

I’m intrigued by the spiritual and metaphysical and try to reflect this in each piece. Though, not aiming to illustrate any one belief, ism or theology, I consider my sculpted, abstract figures to be shaimen, traiteurs, witchdoctors, wisemen, elders or other characters that acknowledge forces of the spirits and other dimensions. My figures are always good and I like to think of them as watching over us, keeping us safe.

My original inspiration was a hanging display of decorative, Japanese kimonos. Transforming these flowing robes and sashes into clay, adding the figure’s head and firing in an electric kiln or raku, became the basis of my sculpture. The talisman of wood, stone, glass or feathers completes the personality and uniqueness of each.