Stefanie Smith Ceramics

 

Artist Statement

I am drawn to the ceramic medium because the intimacy it allows me in the creative process. Every step must be carefully thought out and planned for, but never so much so that it compromises spontaneity or intuition. When I create with clay my thoughts are fully focused on the material; what it feels like, how it moves, and where it wants to go. Through this the process becomes not just an intimate experience, but a spiritual one. It is my desire that this feeling is conveyed to the viewer through the finished pieces.

To communicate this sense of intimate spirituality I primarily explore forms that urge the viewer to hold and caress them. They are frequently decorated with ornate imagery that is symbolic in nature, with use of repetition and fragmentation that encourages the viewer to look closely and from all angles. 

Barrel Firing

The vast majority of my creative work is done using smoke firing and other alternative firing processes. I am drawn to these techniques because they require me to 'give the piece away' to the elements of nature; to allow the fire and smoke to complete each piece. This makes me feel as though I am more of a collaborator than a soloist, and it is an overt acknowledgement of the important role that fire, air, and water play in the life of a ceramic artist. The process of revealing the pieces from the ashes after the firing is also significant for me as it makes every firing exciting, and every completed piece feel like a gift.

 

Bio

Stefanie Smith is an Ontario-born artist who now calls St. John's Newfoundland home. She received her BFA(Visual) from Memorial University in 2007, and went on to complete the Ceramics Certificate Program at Haliburton School of The Arts in 2011.

Stefanie's current work explores alternative firing techniques, with a special focus on pattern, ornament, and surface treatment. Additionally, she produces a line of functional electric fired wares featuring her signature embossed designs.

 

 

 

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