Carmen Ballarín

  (1955 Madrid – 2010 Madrid)

Carmen was born in Madrid in 1955. She studied at the Escuela Oficial de Cerámica de Madrid between 1970 and 1975 and eventually set up her own workshop. Since 1995 she exhibited in Spain, France and Holland. She has a few pieces in Adolf Egners private collection, which has now been donated to Valencia’s National Museum.

All the pieces are made out of Limoges porcelain by “slipcasting”. This technique consists of pouring the porcelain in the form of a thick liquid into a plaster mould. The mould then absorbs the humidity and the longer it is left in the mould, the thicker the sides of the bowl become. They were left in for less than a minute, and then were taken out at what is called the “leather hard” stage. At this point the bowl is very soft and difficult to handle but  each piece is worked with different tools and once they are dry they are decorated with a ceramic colourant. Once fired at 1280º, some of them are given the finishing touches with a very fine water file.      
She handled and shaped each piece tenderly, to create as pure and as delicate a shape as possible. Their incredible thinness makes them look as if they could float up into the air. She pared away the non-essential elements to reveal a work free of all artifice. The results, in spite of their minimalism, demand and deserve all our attention. Carmen kept on with her search for perfection and consequently rejected a lot of her work.