I’m Harlinah Teoh, an emerging ceramics artist in Melbourne, Australia.
I’ve taken to ceramics with a passion, drawn back to a childhood surrounded by potters and playing with clay. I make organic handbuilt forms with botanical drawings inspired by folk art, nature and my imagination. I work from a tiny backyard studio.
My creative life is enriched through constant exploration and curiosity. I’m interested in unexpected moments of art, beauty, humour and drama that can be found in urban and suburban life.
I enjoy the zone on the edge of order and messiness, structure and imperfection. I am fascinated by patterns and love patchwork quilts, bojagi, boro and sashiko, Islamic tiles, logic puzzles, natural history illustration, classification systems, indexes, maps, encyclopaedias and other imperfect human attempts to bring order to chaos.
I have a type of synaethesia that causes me to associate colours with numbers, letters and people. My favourite colours are indigo to wear and green to surround me. When I was little, it made me feel physically ill to draw a picture without green in it.
I love plants. I grew up in dry scrubby bushland and temperate rainforest. I’m a gardener, camper and lover of wild places. My favourite tree is a giant Morton Bay fig, my favourite flower is alien-looking love-in-the-mist, and my favourite scent is a fence full of jasmine. I’m a fan of weedy wildflowers.
I’ve lived and worked in Tokyo, Singapore and several states around Australia. My favourite places to roam are Japan, New York and anywhere in the Australian bush.