HOMEWARE DESIGNERS - Geoffrey Healy Pottery, Wicklow: Pottery with Soul
I was in awe of my meeting with Geoffrey Healy in Wicklow. There is something magically profund about a man who believes into his craft and draws from the energy of the earth to give back to his customers. “My intention is to make works that nourish at a deep level while pursuing an energetic beauty” says his website. I could feel the power of his words translating into realty through his beautiful pottery at his studio and home.
Geoffrey Healy is my link to Ireland from Antigua. The wonderful potter Nancy Nicholson (whose interview you can read here) introduced me to him. She herself had a grounding in the soil of the earth that she collected and worked with to make her ceramics.
Geoffrey Healy. Photo by Eamonn Lawless.
Geoffrey asked about my story. I told him about the pull to return to Ireland that I felt. It was like a call that I had to answer. “Ireland is the heart chakra of the world” he sad simply. I believe him.
Geoffrey’s pottery is award winning and can be seen in use in Avoca stores through Ireland, Kelly Hotel in Rosslare, amongst others. He also teaches for the Craft Council to “share the making process and influence the next generation of makers”. You can visit his studio in Wicklow and buy wonderful pieces to use or to simply look at from there.
This is a beautiful interview with a man who is living his beliefs “Potters have the potential to work with their heads, their hands and their hearts”.
I asked him why he chose pottery as his livelihood. “I found that school only tests a few forms of intelligence. Later somebody suggested to me to do a foundation course and on the second day I was handed some clay. I liked the squeeze of it. I still like it, I love it. I love glazes too. I am interested in the chemistry of it all, so I play around with glazes all the time.”
“As I decided to make pottery a career, it was passion that saw me through the investment. I got a scholarship to study in Japan. I found my spirituality was based on Irish beliefs but it was very different there. I discovered that when you are drinking it is beyond function, it is nourishing. Like when you make a loaf of bread with love, you nourish your family”
I was fascinated by the philosophy and thoughts that run through his daily life. “We live here and we take it for granted. We have expectations and use economic guidelines as a measuring stick, I want to be nourishing the soul rather than just doing it. I spend my days trying to achieve something beautiful rather than deal with ugliness. I make pots that heal and nourish people. It is Buddhist principles”.
Geoffrey runs workshops and classes from his studio and he says that they all begin with an energy exercise. He is interested in improving people’s quality of living. “I enjoy to sell direct not wholesale.”
Meeting Geoffrey was beyond pottery and craft. I had a feeling that some magic travels through his hands into every piece that he makes and that he has a powerful relationship with his craft and the earth. His work his gifted and I urge you to visit his studio and see for yourselves.
Thank you to Geoffrey for this lovely interview and for sharing his designs with us to enjoy.