Smoke & Flame – Wood-Fired & Shino Ceramics

Blyth Festival Art Gallery

Liz Willoughby

An Exhibition by Nine of Ontario’s Foremost Ceramic Artists

July 21 – August 12, 2023
Reception: July 21, 2023 @ 6 pm
Blyth Festival Art Gallery

In the Mino region of Japan lie rich deposits of a clay suitable for making durable domestic pottery. For centuries, whole villages were involved in the business of mining, preparing, wheel-throwing, glazing and firing their wares. A few times each year, the product of the entire village was loaded into huge wood-burning kilns, often 20 metres long, built up the slope of a hill. Loaded with thousands of pieces, it took seven to ten days to fire the kiln to the high temperatures needed to mature the clay. The smoky atmosphere and drifting fine wood ash inside the kiln combined to give the pottery its distinctive colours; bone, orange, grey and black, often with a gorgeous pewter lustre and rippled texture.

It is possible to approximate some of these conditions using specially formulated glazes, a gas or wood burning kiln, and a lot of experience. Because of its ephemeral quality, pottery made by Japanese masters using these glazes were highly valued by connoisseurs the world over. This exhibition showcases the work of nine Ontario potters who have dedicated much of their careers to exploring this fascinating Japanese technique.

Monica Johnston

About the Artists

Tony Clennell – Aylmer, ON
Bruce Cochrane – Toronto, ON
Stephen Corner – Clarksburg, ON
Kim Harcourt – Shelburne, ON
Monica Johnston – Warkworth, ON
Barbara Murphy – Guelph, ON
Timothy Smith – Wiarton, ON
Liz Willoughby – Brighton, ON
Robert Tetu (Curator) – Seaforth, ON

Blyth Festival Art Gallery

A vibrant and integral part of the Blyth Centre for the Arts, The Blyth Festival Art Gallery is housed in the Bainton Gallery within the Blyth Community Memorial Hall.

The Blyth Festival Art Gallery is operated by an enthusiastic group of art-loving volunteers.

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Blyth Festival Art Gallery
431 Queen Street, Blyth, Ontario
519 523 9300

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