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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Visiting Potter Mary Briggs

One of the really fun things about my job is that I get to go to the homes of some of the artist's whose work we carry at Passionflower. One such outing took me to the very charming home of potter Mary Briggs who is going to have a show in our upstairs attic gallery this coming Friday.

Here's a shot of Mary's desk which kind of gives you the idea that she has some affinity for the past, for a time when life was a little simpler.
And above is a shot of some of her work which definitely gives you the idea that she is interested in a simpler time. Her work references french country pottery in it's choice of materials and colors and then she draws bucolic nineteenth century pastoral themes on the clay. Mary is one of those artists who is channelling another time in history.

Here's a shot of her studio - gives you an idea of the small scale she is working on.

And here's her kitchen where she keeps a collection of cups and mugs all made by favorite potter friends. Every one has a story. I love that.

She also keeps ducks and has a little pond for them in her backyard.....See all the things you can learn about someone from going to their home?

And I also got a deeper feeling for her craft. She takes glazed pieces before firing and draws into the clay.

It's like she's scratching the drawing onto the pot.
And another thing that happens when I visit is I get to see what else they might be up to- what they're incubating.

In Mary's case she's been practicing sculpting the animals with clay instead of drawing them.
Here's a spectacular flower frog that she made of a brown cow. We sold this piece last year.
I wish I had a better picture. The glaze had big solid crackles all over it. Everything was perfect about it. It was maybe 8 or 1o inches tall.

And here's some pieces that are sitting in small plastic rooms in her studio as they dry.
Be still my beating heart!!!! A woman and a minotaur. Mary wants to turn these into lamps.

Leda and the Swan. I asked Mary if these would be ready for the show but alas and alack she said she is having some problems with them. Pottery can be so fickle. I'm not sure I could tolerate working on something for so long and then having it come to naught because the glaze did something wierd, or something exploded, or one of any number of things that can happen. I guess if you're a potter you get lots of practice in turning over control to the forces that be and letting go.
But I definitely digress. In the meantime, I hope you have a chance to check out the show Mary is curating upstairs at the store. It will feature her pottery displayed in a very,( well how shall I tempt you ?) well a very peasant, boar hunting lodge kind of a way (if that's at all tempting).
The show will be up through most of the month of October.

1 comment:

  1. jEWEL,

    You should have put a photo of Mary's sweet little face in this group. Maybe she was too shy.