Hal Bohn

Born in Illinois, my first serious artistic efforts were at the Chicago Art Institute; 1953-55.  Then, using my GI Bill stipend I continued my studies at the Otis Art Institute inL.A., from 1957-62.  In 1960 I changed my painting major to ceramics, after being taken up with the excitement being generated in the ceramics department by “abstract expressionist” sculptor Peter Voulkas, the instructor, and Paul Soldner, a student of his.  (together they developed the prototype of the electric wheel)  I did my thesis work in “functional sculpture” and received by MFA in 1962.

I stopped making pottery in 1977 to devote my time to oil painting, water colors, pastels, figure drawing and wood sculpture.  In 2007 I started ceramics again at LBCC with Leslie Green, hand building functional sculptures and doing raku firings, then switched to Ted Enst’s “clay exploration” evening classes and took up throwing again.  I enjoy and benefit from the unique camaraderie of the instructors and students enrolled in the ceramics department at LBCC!

To me, a thrown shape is a blank canvas, waiting to have more clay added to, altered, carved, and colored.  The subject matter of my work are mostly figurative, in series of variations on a common theme as I explore its potential.  Most of my pieces take weeks or months to complete.

Three current interests are: 1.  Spray coating the smooth stone burnished exterior of my pieces with a heavy coating of iron oxide, then after the final firing, adding a patina to the surface by using an electric drill with a wire brush to bring the surface to a lustrous sheen.  2.  Making and carving porcelain objects so thin they are translucent.  3.  Drawing human features, animals and birds on a pure white smooth porcelain surface; I wet a sable brush then dip it into a small bowl of very fine black under-glaze, shaved from a pencil, and applied as a wash, it is absorbed into the surface of the clay in a semi-stable form; it can be moved around or removed with water and brush; I use metal tools to draw white lines through the under glaze, shade, and scrape.  When finished it is thinly coated with a clear glaze.

My current inspirations are historical, exploring and gleaning ideas from photos of artifacts from all of the accessible world cultures.  Thank you Google images!








Every Pitcher Tells a Story – 1







Every Pitcher Tells a Story -1 (detail other side)










Every Pitcher Tells a Story – 2









Every Pitcher Tells a Story – 3







Serving Dish – “Faces of the Moon”







Serving Dish – “Dinner Party”







Serving Dish – “Untitled”



Leave a Reply