Studio Huddle

Toronto's group studio "Studio Huddle" is having its annual holiday shopping event this month. I am very thankful to have been invited to participate in this show, with many artists I admire. Jesse and I attended the opening shopping night last Thursday, to shmooze with other artisans and see how they had displayed the work. Margaret Lim did a fantastic job with the display, and the mulled wine was delicious. I always love attending openings but I don't often make it to many because I don't live in the city. When I do get the chance, I try to spend a long time catching up with my craft-peers, and absorbing the quality of the work. There is still so much to learn and exhibitions are one of the best places to be inspired! I'm thankful Jesse is a trouper and joins me on these ventures, even when I spend the night chatting with other artists.

IMG_4737 It was very comforting to see my work alongside these other fantastic artisans. To say I am delighted would be an understatement!

If you haven't had the chance yet, check out the show this month (it runs until Christmas Eve). I'll be there this Saturday from 2:30-6pm, watching the shop and absorbing the greatness. You could stop and say hello! The work is exceptional, and what better gift to give that special someone, than a one-of-a-kind piece of art?

I picked up one of Brad Copping's "Stumpware" candle holders at the opening (featured below, next to my mugs and espresso cups). I have added it to my personal collection because, well, sometimes it's nice to treat yourself (:

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Studio Huddle is located at 97 Niagara St. in Toronto, ON. For more information about the show, visit my NEWS page for the event postcard, or the Studdle Huddle Pop-Up Shop event page

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Upcoming Show at Nuit Blance

Nuit Blanche is an all night arts festival that takes place every year in cities all over the world. This year, Toronto's Nuit Blanche takes place from evening October 5 until sunrise on October 6. All night long, public and private galleries, museums, and shops will be open free of charge to the public. Streets and public parks will be filled with contemporary art projects by almost 500 artists, including a centerpiece installation by world-renowned artist Ai Weiwei. wychwood-barns

During the festivities, the Fusion: Clay and Glass Association is putting on their annual Pottery and Glass show at Artscape Wychwood Barns.  I have been invited to participate in the show along with many other talented artists. I will have teacups, mugs, candle dishes/cradles, planters, bowls, spoons, plates and MORE for sale and show. Please come and visit us! I will be there volunteering from 9pm -3am October 5-6, and would love some company.

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Small Favors

I've always really loved little things. There is something delightfully more intimate about a miniature object than a similar object of a larger size. Being able to hold the entirety of an object in the palm of your hand is an intimate and engaging experience. This spring I was accepted into a show called Small Favors VIII - an annual "miniature" exhibition at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia.  Each artist submitted a piece of work that was no larger than 3.5" x 3.5" that were displayed in plexiglass cubes on the wall. Some artists used these parameters as a way to engage the audience in a new way and made special work for the event. Other artists submitted pieces from their current body of work that fit into these parameters.

One of my wood-fired porcelain dessert stands made it into the show, along with pieces from a range of other makers across the world. You can see the whole show online (and purchase work) at http://www.theclaystudio.org/exhibition/small-favors-viii

Some of my favourite pieces from the show are:

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The pieces will be on display in the gallery at The Clay Studio until Saturday June 2. However, the pieces will remain in the online gallery for much longer. Please take note that, unfortunately, my piece was photographed upside-down, so doesn't properly display its features or use on their website. But, here is the photograph I snapped of the piece before I sent it to the folks in Philadelphia.

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The Clay Studio:

"Small Favors challenges and engages artist’s creativity in new and exciting ways with the challenge of making pieces for this exhibition. For some artists, the work they create is similar to what they normally make, although at a reduced scale. Others use it as an opportunity to break away from what they create in their daily studio practice. Regardless of this choice, the works exhibited are incredibly varied in material, form, and aesthetics. Though small in scale the artworks created for this exhibition are huge in impact. Each work is exhibited in a Plexiglas wall mounted cube.

Conceived of in 2006, Small Favors grew out The Studio's efforts to offer accessible, high-quality artworks that appeal to art enthusiasts of all ages. For older collectors who are challenged for space it allows them to continue to collect work by artists they love. For young art collectors it provides an accessible entry point."

Grad Show at the Ontario Crafts Council

The school year is officially over and I've moved all of my things out of the studio for the last time. Yesterday I moved up to Wiarton, ON (about 3 hours North of the GTA) to apprentice with a potter for the summer. I start tomorrow. Until today I have not had a moment free to update with all of the recent events, shows and day-to-day musings. I have been taking photographs and notes however, so please bear with me over the next few days while I catch up on all the latest. [gallery type="square" columns="5" ids="597,595,596,598,599"]

Back in April we fired Scarlet again for our last time. We won't be returning to Sheridan in the fall so our access to atmospheric kilns has been cut off (unless of course the students next year invite us to put a couple pieces in). We kicked it into high gear during the last two weeks of school and tried to produce as much work as possible so we could fully stack the wood kiln and soda kiln with our work.

This time firing Scarlet we were smarter. We loaded her up on the Saturday night, went home for a good night's sleep and returned early Sunday morning to get her going. I had the first shift and relaxed in my comfy chair by the tiny fire for hours drinking tea. No heavy duty stoking required in that early morning shift.

After the kiln fired off we had a day's break to prep for two shows that weekend - one at the Ontario Crafts Council in Toronto, the other at the gallery at Sheridan. I went over to the OCC Wednesday morning to set up for the second part of This Could Work. The first part was set up the week prior to our opening and presented the work of the graduates from the glass and textiles studios. Here's a collection of photos I took at that event:

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The second half of the show was the work of the furniture and ceramics students. I met with a couple fellow students, Linda Sormin (our studio head) and our amazing installer Carmen to set up for the show. At the end of a long day we had all the wall work installed, all the plinths for furniture painted and the space was set up, ready to place the work. A big thank you goes out to Carmen for returning the next day to finish set up and look after the final details!

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Part of my work for the OCC included a performance piece, where I invited two people to intimately serve desserts to the audience at the opening. These lovely ladies, decked out in theatrical outfits and high heels, drifted through the overflowing opening and invited the audience to experience my dessert stands, by snacking on the macarons, tarts and rum balls that were delicately placed on their lace doilies. A strong interest for me lies in the human condition and how society acts and reacts in certain situations. This activity brought back a breadth of information on the ways in which humans interact with each other intimately. Some people at the show accepted the offer gratefully, with unwavering delight. Others were sceptical, not only pausing to question the food itself, but the kind gesture of a complete stranger.

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Finally, THANK YOU to the Ontario Crafts Council for hosting the event and continually supporting Sheridan College's Craft and Design program. So many of the opportunities available to us are thanks to their efforts and encouragement. For more information visit the OCC's website.

Variations on Symmetry

IMG_1704 Thursday night was the opening of Variations on Symmetry, a show presenting the works of Eliza Au and Ying-Yueh Chang. I have always admired Ying-Yueh's work in photographs, never having had the opportunity to experience her installations in person. Ying-Yueh previously taught at Sheridan and though she never taught me personally, I heard many stories of her dedication and passion for ceramics. Believe me, the work proves it.

The OCC's Janna Hiemstra curates a fantastic show. From the sidewalk of Queen West, the view through the gallery's front window is enticing and enchanting; Ying-Yueh's "Winter Garden" hangs at the front, inviting the public into a wonderland of detail, precision and repetition.

The show was frankly, breathtaking. Each piece boasted hours of labour, meticulous detail and intentional composition. Eliza Au (a former student of Ying-Yueh's) presented equally as complex and delicate forms. Using primarily ceramic, glass and paper, Eliza's works reflected elaborate tessellations, pattern and repetition.

Variations on Symmetry has been in the works for FOUR years and has been touring across Canada for several months. It's next stop will be in Halifax, Nova Scotia. For more information on the show, go to www.craft.on.ca

Better yet, check out the show - it's on until April 13th at the Ontario Craft Council (990 Queen St. West, TO).

Here are some photos from the opening.

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