Hans Vangsø lives and works in Knebel, near Århus, Denmark, an area renowned for its strong ceramic traditions. He makes bold woodfired pots, often square vases and large jars. He has exhibited widely in Denmark and Europe, and in 2002 was one of the artists selected for the major touring exhibition From the Kilns of Denmark which travelled to New York, Berlin and Paris.
Vangsø studied at the Jutland Academy of Fine Arts in Demark from 1972 to 1976, where he was taught by Gutte Eriksen. They remained close friends and he continued assisting her in making and firing her works into her 80's. In 2004 she wrote of her admiration for his latest works:
Once upon a time the composer Stravinsky said “All art that isn’t based on tradition is imitation.”
I feel that Hans in his work is aware of the truth of these words – and he has worked hard to achieve this knowledge. He has studied the big anonymous pots from all his travels around the world – and because of that he had the chance to realise himself.
It’s so lovely to see the strength in his shapes.
It’s lovely to see the bottom in his pots.
It’s lovely to see how wild he has been in his firings.
And it’s lovely to see something in the pots you didn’t expect at all.