November 1 - 30, 2014
“It is the responsibility of all artists to constantly grow and push forward, freeing the imagination and searching out the next challenge. In some sense, however, that is everyone’s responsibility.” - Rosemary Aiello
I don’t really remember a time without art in my life. What began as an exploration of art in history evolved over time into hands on experience of fiber arts: spinning, weaving, knitting, crochet, macramé.
At the age of 36, I ventured for the first time into formal training in ceramics. Attending the Rockland Center for the Arts in West Nyack, New York, I discovered that what made me most happy was working with clay. That’s where my “clay life” began….I had worked with stained glass, water color and many crafts but never experienced that strong feeling and that connection, somehow. Something about the feeling of the clay and the satisfaction with the end product was clearly driving me.
While at the Rockland Center for the Arts, I studied with some of the most highly respected ceramic artists of recent times: Roberta Leber, Don Bradford, Rosemary Aiello and Edna Nitopi.
In the 31 years that I’ve been working with clay, I have explored several processes, all of which have become stepping stones for my present work: hand building, wheel throwing, Raku, sculpting, altering forms, attaching forms to thrown pieces, consequently the transition to teapots. Most of what I’ve made has been done in a series: bowls, plates, casseroles, dinnerware sets, pitchers, mugs, platters, teapots. I found that by working in a series, there was room for expansion and exploration of ideas.
Some potters express themselves through shape, creating unusual hand built forms or altering thrown pieces in highly individualized ways. Others approach the clay as three-dimensional backgrounds for their decorative vision. I think of pottery as a blank surface badly in need of color and design. Using commercial underglazes to draw the designs, I then cover the bright colors with a lead free and non-toxic clear overglaze, subsequently hi-fired in an electric kiln to Cone 6, resulting in a product that is functional and safe in a microwave, oven or dishwasher.
Over the years I have gained great joy and fulfillment from making pots. The process and product is important, of course. But mostly I love how pots connect me with people. I enjoy meeting and talking to customers at my sales, and I like having them see my studio and the garden that inspires my work. When they take one of my pieces home, I feel privileged to have become a little part of their daily life.
I consider myself a craftsperson, not an artist in the fine sense. I just like to make pots and I’m happy when the lids fit.