Photo by Ben Boswell
Yo Thom was born in Tokyo, but has been in England half of her life, since 1996 when she came to study 3D design at the Kent Institute of Art and Design. Yo specialized in ceramics and went on to complete an MA in Ceramics in 2000.
Yo creates thrown and hand-built functional stoneware, expressing herself through their functionality. She is influenced by British and Japanese ceramic traditions and food culture. Japanese potter Ken Matasuzaki was important to the formation of Yo’s Japanese voice within her work, and her interest in Nezumi Shino pottery from the Mino area in Japan, which her vessels echo with a distinct grey colouring and lined patterning. She uses an indigo slip to decorate her work with the sgraffito technique, before applying a white glaze on top.
Working with Lisa Hammond MBE taught Yo many pottery skills and enhanced the confidence she had in her making. Yo is now based in Shaftesbury in Dorset, where she finds a lot of inspiration in the landscape there.