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Gay Smith

Gay Smith

Gay Smith creates distinctive wheel thrown porcelain vessels, known for their unique faceting and finished in a soda kiln. The pots look alive, a bit whimsical, and anthropomorphic in the way they appear to want to dance or sashay off the shelf. Glazed predominantly in turquoise, gold and green mattes, Gay’s work is marked with exceptional craftsmanship and style.

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Gay Smith Yellow Mug at MudFire Gallery
Price: $30.00
Gay Smith Green Mug at MudFire Gallery
Price: $30.00
Gay Smith Mug at MudFire Gallery
Price: $30.00
Gay Smith Mug at MudFire Gallery
Price: $30.00

Gay Smith at MudFire

Gallery group show Porcelain, August 2010
Gallery group show Potters of the Roan, April 2009
Gallery group show American Masters, May 2008
Solo show Pots That Dance, May 2005
Workshop presenter Working Wet, May 2005


Gay Smith Artist Bio

Gay Smith is a studio potte, single firing porcelain ware in a soda kiln near Penland, NC. She held artist-in-residencies at the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, Montana and at Penland School in Penland, NC. Her teaching credits include workshops at Penland School, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, the Harvard Ceramics Studio, Odyssey Center for the Arts, and the Findhorn Foundation in Northern Scotland. Her work is shown internationally, and can be viewed in publications including Functional Pottery and Mark Making by Robin Hopper, and Working with Clay by Susan Peterson. In 2006-7, she was selected as a recipient of a North Carolina Arts Council Visual Artist Fellowship.


Gay Smith Artist Statement

These days I contemplate the relevance of living as a practicing artist in a world filled with conflict and exploited for resources.

I am blessed to live where fireflies emerge on the first warmest spring night, where earth and weather miraculously transform seeds into food, where I live synergistically within an evolving globe of blue swinging wildly and delicately in a galaxy among galaxies.

How does my work as a potter contribute? Working for many years as a potter seems to develop qualities which I believe are of benefit: caring attention, commitment, honesty, courage, passion, hard work, love of beauty, and a willingness to get one's hands dirty.

The process of working with clay connects me with mystery. As in the ancient art of alchemy, the essential elements, earth, water, air, and fire, combine through the mediation of the potter to create form, new pots. Are these objects the artist's philosopher's stone? Dirt transformed to gold? As well as use and aesthetic pleasure or innovation, do consciously made pots carry some ineffable ability to heal and transform? What lies embedded in the stone of fired clay by the creative alchemical bond between material, process, and person. What may be conveyed through use or enjoyment?

A hand grasps a handle, compassion arises in the heart.

This is what I intend.

Gay Smith Artist Resume

1991: Student, Visual Design Program, University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth.
1991: Student, Ceramics Program, University of Oregon.
1975: AB, General Studies Cum Laude, Harvard University.
Selected Recent Exhibitions:
"Infinite Teapot", Ohio Crafts Museum, Columbus, OH.
"Teatime", Red Star, Kansas City, MO.
"Yunomi", AKAR, Iowa City, IA.
"Functional Ceramics", Wooster, OH.
"Under Cover", Clay Art Center, Rye, NY.
"The Simple Cup", KOBO, Seattle, WA.
"Art of Dining", Worcester Craft Center, MA.
"Salt & Pepper", Cedar Creek Gallery, NC.
"Southern Exposure...", Rye Arts Center, Rye, NY.
"Transformations: 6x6", Clay Art Center, Rye, NY.
"The Artful Tabletop", Lyndhurst, NY.
"Faculty Show", Odyssey Gallery, Asheville, NC.
"The Ohr Challenge", juried, Ohr-O'Keefe Museum, Biloxi, MS.
"Gertrude Graham Smith, Recent Work", solo show, MT Burton Gallery, NJ.
"Cape Folk", Berta Walker Gallery, Provincetown, MA.
"North Carolina Fellowship Recipients Exhibition", Rocky Mount Arts Center, NC.
"Let It Pour", Dow Studio Gallery, Deer Isle, ME.
"National Teapot Show VII", Cedar Creek Gallery, Creedmore, NC.
"POTR in Triplicate", Crimson Laurel Gallery, NC.
"Women's Voices", Roswell, GA.
"Ahead of the Need", CERF benefit, Red Lodge Clay Center, MT.
"Table of Elements", Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, Pittsburgh, PA. NCECA.
"La Mesa", Santa Fe Clay, Santa Fe, NM.
"Another Cup", Baltimore Clayworks, Baltimore, MD.
"Yunomi", AKAR, Iowa City, Iowa.
"Spotlight 2007", Juried, ACC SE, Arrowmont School, Gatlinburg, TN.
"From These Hills 2007", juried, William King Regional Arts Center, Abingdon, VA.
"Potters of the Roan", Rocky Mount Arts Center, Rocky Mount, NC.
"Potters of the Roan", Washington Street Gallery, Lewisburg, VA.
"The Vase", The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA.
"Tea", Penland Gallery, Penland School, Penland, NC.
"Ladies in White", Goodall Gallery, NCECA, Louisville, KY.
"Bourbon Bottles", Louisville Clay, NCECA, Louisville, KY.