Yoshiko Ratliff is an award winning ceramist who was born and raised in Japan. She has exhibited her work throughout the United States and her pieces are also in private and corporate collections in the United States, Brazil, and Japan.

Ceramics have been a constant in my life and heritage. The shapes, finishes, and colors in my one-of-a-kind pieces reflect my experiences, environment, and what I find moving and beautiful. Art is found in the linkages formed between the earth, the artist, and the user through the shape and functionality of each piece. The shaping, glazing, and firing of each piece lead to endless possibilities, challenges, and new ways of self-expression as an artist.

Crystalline glazes are one of the most difficult and challenging glazes to produce. This is because they are unusually difficult and time-consuming to formulate and fire. They require meticulous attention to every detail.

I fire one-of-a-kind porcelain pieces to over 2350 °F in the kiln, quickly dropping the temperature several hundred degrees to the range where crystals will grow. The crystals form in the glaze in a chemical reaction during cooling and grow from small nuclei created during the melting process when silica and zinc come together to form zinc-silicate.

Each glaze composition, together with the firing and cooling schedule, and glaze thickness, makes different forms and colors of crystals.

I love producing and sharing beauty from such a challenging and complex process.