Ron was born in British Columbia, Canada and his art reflects his memories of those natural surroundings and
the beauty of his current home in Newport on Sydney’s northern beaches. Whale tails and polar bears dominate his current series of raku fired sculptures. The first whale tail sculpture, Migaloo, was one of twenty-five pieces accepted for entry into the 2016 Warringah Art Prize for Small Sculpture and was also the People’s Second Choice in the 2016 Newport Sculpture Trail.
The naked raku technique is a firing method starting with coarse white clay followed by a bisque firing, second firing in a reduction environment. The random charcoal lines result from cracking of the glaze which is removed after firing. “Clay is a natural medium and I enjoy the feeling of working with a material dug from the earth. It doesn’t get more natural than that. With the naked raku method, the sculptures smell like they have been in fire and are actually etched with smoke from the final firing. There is also an unplanned aspect to the process in which some of the outcome are left to fate. Although I have an end in mind, it’s somewhat uncertain…I don’t really know what the end result will be. I have focused on whales and polar bears because they are symbols of man’s effect on the environment - both are sea creatures that are under pressure from man. By using the naked raku technique, which requires multiple firings and open flame, I am trying to capture a water creature under pressure from man – it seems right.”