Clay 2015 in Chilliwack promises dynamic display

Chilliwack is known for its vibrant and active community of potters who will be part of a new show opening June 18

People have a look at some of the pieces of pottery on display during Clay 2012. This year's show runs from June 18 to July 18.

Working in clay means lifelong learning.

That’s one of the reasons why local potter Holly McKeen is eagerly anticipating Clay 2015, a juried exhibition opening on June 18.

Not only will 30 artists be showing off their best pots, but David Lloyd, a Burnaby-based ceramic artist and educator will be jurying the show and offering valuable feedback.

“Whenever I’m given the opportunity to be critiqued by someone of David’s calibre, I wouldn’t miss it,” explains McKeen.

“He’s so good and I’m very interested in what he has to say.”

She’s been potting for 12 years and exhibiting worldwide for the past seven years.

Chilliwack is known for its vibrant and active community of potters. Some of the more well-known artists will be participating in Clay 2015, including Ted Driediger, Deborah Greenfield, Sue Schellenberg, as well as McKeen.

“There’s a cross-section of artists, and a real variety of work, techniques and styles.”

Clay 2015 will be the next show at the Chilliwack Gallery, located inside the Chilliwack Cultural Centre, and marks the 40th Anniversary Celebration of the Fraser Valley Potters’ Guild Association.

“It’s going to be a beautiful show,” said McKeen.

A range of techniques makes for diverse styles, like raku or wood fire to crystalline glazing, and from functional pieces to more abstract or decorative.

Attendees at the artists’ reception on June 20 can meet some of the artists, as well as viewing their gallery work, or picking up a mug.

Before the show, everyone will be dropping off their pots to be juried. They will all be set up on tables. Judge Lloyd comes in and selects the ones he likes best, and with the artists back in the room, he makes a detailed presentation of his findings.

“It’s a wonderful critiquing process.”

From amateur potters to professionals, everyone will get to have at least one piece in the show.

There will be awards of merit and the people’s choice award, as well as mugs and other small pieces for sale.

That’s so show visitors can purchase a favourite piece and take it home right away. Many other pieces in the exhibit will also be available for sale, and can be collected at the end of the run, July 19.

Clay 2015, June 18-July 19, in the Chilliwack Gallery inside the Cultural Centre with Opening Reception and Awards Presentation set for June 20, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. with artists on-hand.