Colorado-Made Porcelain Ring LED Light Sculptures
Artist Ted Bradley harnesses perseverance and exceptional craftsmanship to create unique lighting
When Ted Bradley set out to create the world’s first set of porcelain light rings, he had no idea that what he thought would be an interesting challenge would require 12 months, 1,300 pounds of clay, hundreds of failures, and 100-hour work weeks.
Advised from the beginning that his vision was near impossible, Bradley persisted through trial after trial, perfecting every step of the process. He tackled this pursuit— supported by an engineering mind and an artistic soul—in a funky East Boulder warehouse, incessantly forming, drying, firing, and glazing his exquisite, one-of-a-kind creations.
Bradley was introduced to ceramics by way of a randomly chosen elective his freshman year in high school. That requirement turned into a passion that lasted all eight semesters of high school and through college at the University of Wisconsin, where he majored in mechanical engineering and art. “I ended up having way too many credits when I graduated,” jokes Bradley.
The concept for the lights originally came to him six or seven years ago, but he didn’t take the leap from corporate stability to artistic entrepreneurship until 2019.
“I had it in my head and worked on it a bit but was working full time at Google as a product manager,” Bradley shares. “More and more I wasn’t feeling fulfilled or happy at work; it was very stressful. What I always really wanted to do is be an inventor, and I always loved art. I brought those two things together and, essentially, this is my dream job.”
Just a year after completing his first light sculpture, Ted Bradley’s work is featured in showrooms in San Francisco, Los Angeles Dallas, New York, and Chicago, with pieces ranging from $5,000 to $23,000.
“I believe that art is essentially listening to feelings that are so quiet that they don’t have words and you can’t hear them,” muses Bradley. “It’s just something inside you that wants to come out, and art is the process of converting whatever that is into some sort of visual or physical form.”