Helen Mørken – Designer-maker of translucent porcelain objects
Helen Mørken is a ceramic artist based in Tønsberg, Norway.
“I remember when I first became aware that I could achieve translucency with porcelain. I had already succumbed to the magic of this whitest of clays and its tension between fragility and strength. Translucency opened up a new dimension for me. I have grown to be utterly fascinated by the way translucency “implies” and only partially reveals. I started to incorporate sources of light into my work as a sort of visual adjective to enhance the porcelain object. I want the viewer to feel the allure of translucency and be drawn in to the piece and then discover the depth of meaning within.”
“Some of my work is purely sculptural, other pieces incorporate function in the form of electric light and can be used to create a focus in an interior. I play with different levels of translucency, with shadows and with patterns created by the negative spaces. I am consistently informed by my surroundings – primarily the natural environment where I live, close to sea, hills and woods. Sometimes this influence is obvious but often it is a dimension only I am aware of. I try to achieve a balance between control and spontaneity, all too aware that the constant development and honing of my skills can easily tip over into too much control. To combat this, I try to embrace unpredictable movement created by the heat of the kiln. I push the limits of my material and experiment with ways of enhancing its properties for example by adding organic fibre to the raw porcelain to improve its workability. I also enjoy dabbling in other materials, such as recycled plastic or broken household glass but I invariably return to porcelain. I strive to be constantly evolving as an artist while still maintaining my chosen focus.”
Helen’s artistic training in an international environment in the UK gives her work an open perspective and broad appeal; she erases the boundary between sculpture and function. She has exhibited in Norway and the UK both as a solo artist, an invited exhibitor and in numerous group shows as well as creating a number of permanent public art installations. Helen Mørken is a member of Norske Kunsthåndverkerne and her work is found in a number of galleries and art centres throughout Norway.