Suleyman Saba

Home Artists Suleyman Saba




I discovered ceramics as a teenager with the well-respected potter Geoffrey Whiting, who introduced me to the potter’s wheel, the ideas of Bernard Leach – and most important of all – Sung ceramics. His guidance and personality encouraged further studies at the Camberwell College of Arts in London, during a particularly fruitful period in the college’s history (1987-1991). At Camberwell, my ceramic horizons were broadened through contact with Peter Simpson, Colin Pearson, Ewen Henderson, Stephen Parry and Takeshi Yasuda – whose approach to working with clay proved especially liberating. After college, I set up a small studio in Wandsworth, and worked with the potter Diana Peyton. I later undertook an apprenticeship with Kevin Millward at the Gladstone Pottery Museum in Stoke-on-Trent (1993). In addition to honing my skills as a thrower, Kevin gave me invaluable workshop experience. This encouraged me to establish a studio in 1997 from home in Camberwell. In 2009 I became a member of Contemporary Applied Arts. In 2010 I was elected as a professional member of the Crafts Potters Association.


The stoneware traditions of China and Japan are a constant source of inspiration. In particular, the iron-saturated and celadon glazes from the Sung Dynasty, which appeal to me for their refinement and endless subtleties of colour. Although these glazes are steeped in history, they can be reinterpreted onto contemporary forms, making them timeless. Japanese influences diversified in 1997 after visiting an exhibition of lacquer-ware from the workshop of Shibata Zeshin. The decorative traditions of Urushi, with their striking use of colour and incomparable surface finishes continue to stimulate my work through the juxtaposition of glazes on individual pieces (two-toning). Motivations for potting are a love of fine craftsmanship.


Work is represented in the public collections of the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, the York Art Gallery (Bill Ismay Collection) and the Art Gallery of South Australia (Bill Bowmore Collection).


Solo Exhibitions

2016 Beaux Arts, Bath

2013 Beaux Arts, Bath

2013 Ruthin Craft Centre, Denbighshire

2011 Beaux Arts, Bath

2003 Primavera Gallery, Cambridge

2002 Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh

2001 On Line Gallery, Southampton

1999 Charles Hewitt Gallery, Sydney, Australia

1995 Goldmark Gallery, Uppingham


Other Exhibitions

2007 – 2017 Ceramic Art London

2013 Cheongju International Craft Biennale, Korea

2013 “Ceramics Now”, Bluecoat Display Centre, Liverpool

2013 “Uses of Iron”, Contemporary Ceramics Centre

2011 Galanthus Gallery, Hereford

2010 ‘Domestic Contemporaries’, CAA

2009 Origin

2009 Ceramics in the City, Geffrye Museum, London

2008 SOFA, New York

2007, 2008 COLLECT, Victoria & Albert Museum, London

2005 ‘Still Centre’, Joanna Bird Gallery, London

2004 Chelsea Crafts Fair

2003 CDSAE 2003, Sotheby’s, London

2000 CDSAE 2000, Sotheby’s, London

1999 ‘Domestic Ware’, Galerie Besson, London

1998 – 2000 Chelsea Crafts Fair, London



‘Gillian Lowndes’, Amanda Fielding, Ruthin Craft Centre 2013, pp.22, pp.39

‘Colour in Glazes’, Linda Bloomfield, A&C Black 2011, pp.38, pp.87

Crafts, p.67, issue no. 196 Sept/Oct 2005. Review by Shane Enright on ‘Still Centre’ show

Ceramic Review, pp.22-25, Issue 198, Nov/Dec 2002 ‘Suleyman Saba: Amanda Fielding finds function and sensitivity in Suleyman Saba’s tablewares.’



Art Gallery of South Australia, (Bill Bowmore Collection) Adelaide, AUSTRALIA

York Art Gallery, (Bill Ismay Collection) North Yorkshire, ENGLAND

Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, ENGLAND


Technical notes

A range of hand-thrown bowls, vases and tableware is produced in two stoneware clays, with combinations of celadon and iron-saturated glazes, and fired in oxidation to 1280°C in an electric kiln. All glazes are lead-free and tableware may be placed in a dishwasher.