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.
No Longer Available
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.