Photo by by Fireweed: Beardsley Pottery
The Victoria Day long-weekend is a perfect time to visit lovely Denman Island. The 32nd annual Pottery Studio Tour will be showcasing exciting new works by 13 talented artisans in ten unique venues between 10 am to 5 pm on both May 18th and 19th. As always, an incredibly wide variety of exciting forms, styles and decorative techniques make this free annual event a truly fascinating exploration into the world of ceramic arts. From stunning wood-fired vases and hand-painted casserole dishes, to beautiful dinner sets, one-of-a-kind coffee mugs and decorative sculpture for the garden, there is something to be found on the tour to suit every taste.
And the journey is half the fun! Winding one’s way down picturesque country roads to each artist’s unique studio setting is a wonderful way to enjoy the island’s laid back rural ambience and natural beauty, and a lot like a treasure hunt. Beardsley Pottery, for example, produces some of the most beautiful and diverse functional and decorative wares to be found anywhere. Complete dinner sets adorned with three-dimensional ‘seashells’ are available in a creamy matte ivory glaze. Other full service sets are awash in a stunning ‘leopard spot’ glaze (combining milk chocolate tones with velvet black). A wide assortment of vases, teapots and other vessel forms feature leaf patterns pressed onto unglazed surface areas. And some larger pieces serve as three-dimensional canvasses for bas relief carvings of animal, insect and human figures in amazing detail. Other pots are adorned with tactile ‘crawl glazes’ that resemble blue green lichen growing on rock! Garnet Beardsley’s two-dimensional drawings on mugs and other pottery are also immensely popular – her miniature mountain vistas and tiny chickadees are perfectly rendered celebrations of the natural world.
There will be a special exhibit taking place in the Denman Craft Shop all month long featuring examples from each of the artist’s participating on this year’s tour: Gordon Hutchens, Tom Dennis, Hanne Christensen, Scott and Garnet Beardsley, Bentley LeBaron, Shirley Phillips of Lilac Sun Pottery, Marjo Van Tooren of Down to Earth Pottery, Dante Ambriel and Tashi Draper of Flowing Art Studio, Vasilia Wees of Vasilia Clayworks, and Barb and John Mills of Raucous Raven Pottery. You can pick up your free map to the entire tour at the DI Craft Shop (3676 Denman Road) and begin your tour there, or from the ferry booth in Buckley Bay.
For a colorful sneak preview, links to ferry schedule information and more, please visit www.denmanpottery2019.blogspot.ca