Handcraftsmanship is just a means that must never be an end in itself. On the contrary, I try to get away from the pure craftsmanship.
It can often turn into the bondage of the creator. If you are too driven in a certain technique, that often means you become fixated by it. You become a virtuoso, but it will be a technical skill that is emotionless. In 1955, Bertil Vallien joined the ceramics program at the art school Konstfack in Stockholm. Many of his classmates had grown up in environments where art and aesthetics were a natural part of life.
Initially, he felt himself to be at a social disadvantage to them. However, Bertil studied diligently during his time at school, and, for a long time, he practically lived at the school. I was overjoyed the day I discovered I wasn't behind the others in creation, thinking, and knowledge. The successful master-of-all-trades artist Stig Lindberg arrived at the school in 1959 and became principal teacher.
Lindberg conveyed a more limitless way of looking at art than the previous teachers. This suited Bertil, who was not afraid to try new materials and forms of expression.
The young artist's wild-minded ideas and bold projects now received support and guidance. At graduation, Bertil was named best student in his class.