Welcome to "the heART of pender project." This is an idea that has been floating around my mind for sometime now and I am so excited to finally be sharing the outcome of this project with you all. This series showcases two local Pender Island artists while they create. My goal in this project is to show you all how beautiful art is while it is being created, and the amazing, and talented people behind the work.
Pender Artist: Madelin
I was lucky enough to meet Madelin through facebook and after she shared some pictures of her work with me I knew this was a perfect fit as the first artist in "the heART of pender project". Madelin's artist medium is pottery and clay sculptures. Some of her work has an environmental story component to it which shares a story, educates, and has a heartfelt messages behind the pieces. This makes her work even more special and meaningful, not to mention that it is beautiful!
Madelin welcomed me into her home studio on Pender Island one Saturday afternoon, and over a delicious cup of tea we discussed her work and she showed me around her home. I was so excited to explore her home which is filled with her art and the art of others. Every room has beautiful items to explore, admire, and adore. As Madelin showed me around her home she shared many stories of her life, work, and art, which makes the pieces she creates even that much more special. I feel honored that Madelin was so open with her home and her heart for this project.
Next she began working on some bear sculptures and then demonstrated how she uses the potters wheel. It was such a calming environment to watch her work, with the view of the ocean, the forest in bloom, and the soft light through the large studio windows. It showed me how beautiful the act of creating art is.
A week after my visit, Madelin invited me back to her home to experience the process of clay firing called Raku. I was so excited to see this as it is done at night and outside. As a photographer this can be a challenge when you are not sure what to expect, but the outcome was AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL!!!
Q&A with Pender Island Artist Madelin Emery
Please give our readers a brief description of yourself and your art background (and/or the evolution of your work)
Madelin: I didn't know I was an artist till mid-way through my so-far life. I have taken several night courses in pottery and various other mediums and mainly I work with clay and make collages from all kinds of bits of paper and other detritus.
How do you describe your art?
Madelin: Made with clay. thrown and sculptural, raku and stoneware. Some pieces repetitions of the same thing like my bears and orcas. Somehow reflected in the pieces is a reference to the natural world and my comment, whether glorious or unfortunate. I allow the clay to speak, as I have heard authors say their characters write the book. I love working with the raku process because there are so many variables as fire and air interact with the clay and chemicals in the glazes and I allow things to happen. Happy surprises emerge, and some ugly pots.
What drives you to create?
Madelin: it makes me happy. I can't stop.
How does Pender Island influence your art?
Madelin: Pender is a continuation of my journey. Here I have the space, lifestyle and environment to create more than ever before. There are many inspiring creative, collaborative people here too.
Where can people find you and your art? Talisman bookstore, SeaStar Winery 21-23 July 2017, B&K Jewellery and Gifts, (Sooke), Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea (Sidney), and chez moi.
I hope you enjoyed my first "the heART of pender project" post and I would love to hear your comments so please feel free to leave them below.