Thomas Bohle

Working with clay… I cannot help but roll with the tide. The soft material of clay is ever changing, reacting to every movement of mine, subtle as it may be and reflects my inner mood. After firing it lures me into feeling its surface. The attraction remains forever. – Thomas Bohle

After working for several years in the field of medicine, Bohle became a ceramicist in 1991. His technical interest lies in double-walled vessels in which the strongly differing exterior and interior shapes form a deliberate contrast, in form and colour. Fired in an open reduction flame, the oxblood and celadon glazes reveal their true beauty. The artist also often uses a scalpel, a reminder of his former profession, to shape the worked edges of the inwardly descending form.

The silhouette of each piece shows the dynamic sequence of the curve and the counter–curve, where the outer surface is often glazed matt black and inside a contrasting iridescent blood red glaze to accentuate the form. The overall appearance often makes one forget just how much technical expertise is concealed behind the design; these pieces are fired at an amazing 1280 degrees centigrade.

This technical perfection, coupled with a willingness to take risks, gives the work its intensity, sculptural finesse and monumentality. His feel for reductionism and composition allow him to view the strictly precise as a possibility for artistic expressive power. The work has a structural quality that places him firmly in the high level ranks of contemporary international ceramic art.


Bohle lives and works in Vorarlberg, Austria. He has exhibited internationally in both solo and group shows since 1992, and in 2006 he won the Bavarian State Prize. The artist continues to have growing international reputation and is part of many private collections. Bohle also has work included in international public collections of Badisches Landesmuseum, Karlsruhe, Germany; The Grassi Museum, Leipzig, Germany; The International Design Museum, Munich, Germany; The National Museum Wales, Cardiff, UK.

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