Dust Evans Gallery: Featured Artist
Get your hands dirty and explore your creativity at Gloucester Pottery School this year!
Gloucester Pottery School showcasing the work of six diverse professional artists a year in the Dust Evans Gallery. Exhibitions are visible online and in person at the Shenkman Art Center, the gallery is locating on the lower level next to the City of Ottawa's Trinity Gallery. In the past the gallery has had exhibitions by a a diverse range of artists and moving into our 30th year we will seek to give more Dust Evans Gallery exhibition opportunities to artists in equity-seeking communities.
Colette Beardall - Circular Biologic
Colette is an award-winning sculptor of ceramic animal and figurative sculptures who lives with her many animals and indulgent husband just outside of Ottawa on a rural 5 acres.
She began by exhibiting her Raku, Functional and Sculptural work in Alberta throughout the 90’s, and since moving to Ottawa in 2001, she has exhibited at galleries in both solo exhibitions and group shows including at the Cube Gallery, The Ottawa Museum of Nature, the Trinity Gallery in the Shenkman Arts Centre, Loretta Glass Studios and most recently at NAK Gallery in Ottawa. Her work was also featured at the Jared Branfman Memorial Gallery in Needham Massachusetts and the Ontario Crafts Council Gallery in Toronto.
Her work is in private collections in Australia, Japan, the U.K. and throughout North America.
In 2013 she participated in Fusion Clay and Glass Mentorship Program where she decided to concentrate on animal sculpture and is currently exploring incorporating varieties of mixed media and found objects in her ceramic sculpture work.
Her work has been featured in the book “Mastering Raku” by Steven Branfman and 2011’s release of Lark Books “500 Raku” and in April of 2018 two of her most recent animal sculpture works were included in Susan Halls’ comprehensive book “Animal and Figurative Sculpture “.
My newest work is a result of 2 ½ years of isolation and deep reflection on the state of our world and ourselves.
I make my home on 5 acres 30 minutes southeast of Ottawa and share this miraculous place with a continuing circle of animal life. From birds to foxes to bears they all make an appearance here to my great delight and the delight of my trail cameras.
For the past two years I have inhabited this place with a more tangible and steadfast connection. I spend every possible minute outside in my garden and forest with my horses, my dog and the birds that have come to shower their beauty on its environment. During this time, I have been struck by the changes I see in which creatures arrive here. As much as human behaviour has disrupted everything on this planet, adaptation is the baseline of all animal life. Either learning to cope or petering out. The seasons circle around us bringing us new arrivals and sending others to more palatable climes.
Things are changing. We continue to decimate habitats. Storms are more violent. Seasons more unpredictable, life more tenuous. For people, we must contend with the suffering of others if we are empathetic enough to pay attention to more than ourselves.
As things in nature present themselves in circular rhythms, the circle is a recurring touchstone in these sculptures. We watch out planets orbit in their imperfect revolutions and rotations. We watch the seasons demonstrate surrender and rebirth. Consider the fine work of a bird’s nest. The acquiring and shedding of protective fur and fat in mammals, the rings in the growth of a tree, the intricate housing of wasps and bees. The ever-continuing journey of everything we know from life to death to life. From love to loss to love again. My disappointment is that we seem as a species to continue to make the same mistakes throughout history after we’ve learned them.
This is a more personal show for me than I’ve ever done. The figures are representative of my love for all things in the animal realm and my hope for fulfilling human connections and diving within ourselves to reflect and to pay attention. Yet they are also meant to invoke the sadness of how much we’ve lost during a pandemic, a deepening divide of political ideals and an environment in crisis.
My wish is also that it conveys is a sense of hope. Of home, of connection and care to those that need us.