John Maltby (born in Lincolnshire in 1936) studied sculpture at Leicester and Goldsmiths' before deciding to train as a potter, which he did with David Leach. In 1964 he set up a pottery at nearby Crediton, where he still lives and works. His early work was essentially anglo-oriental in style, but his natural affiliation was with modern European art, and he was soon producing pots with vibrant marking that were as clearly influenced by 20th century masters as ceramic history. The pots, now largely hand-built, became more sculptural, more a vehicle too for his lively drawing and colour. In recent years he has concentrated entirely on figurative pieces, evoking a mysterious world of myth and archetypes, objects of character, humour and pathos that have shown Maltby to be a true story teller.

David Whiting