‘Joy Bridy Pottery: Play’ opening friday

While there is a deep pleasure in bringing clay to young people every week, watching and helping them make their ideas into reality before their very eyes, there is also a deep challenge in honoring that play, and bringing the spirit of play back into the studio.  For 6 years, Joy Bridy has taught clay at Shepherdstown Day Care, and shows the influence of play on her studio work in ‘Play’ at the Fire Hall Gallery, Charles Town WV.

Opening Reception: Friday, May 8, 6-8pm

Fire Hall Gallery, 108 S.Samuel Street, Charles Town WV

jade basket

“Each Thursday morning, I take clay to children 3-5 years old, and with a quick pace and open mind, watch them make their ever-changing ideas happen. From bathtubs for dogs to fantastical characters on playgrounds, each child discovers their own unique interests and abilities, building skills and confidence through process and experimentation. When I come back to my studio, there is residual energy left from their big creative minds. I try to capture that spirit in my own way, remembering that play is the work of the child, and sometimes of the artist.”

Start your weekend right by stopping by for some new clay works, snacks by Carol Sanders and Real Good Food, a little wine/beer/punch, and conversation with friends and neighbors.

clay and wood

As a sneak-peak, one of the treats of this exhibit is a collaboration between Joy and Vanessa Morris (Blue Ridge Salvage and Over the Mountain Studio Tour), who made the pedestals for the exhibit out of salvaged lumber.  These stands make the exhibit shine, and are truly complementary to the work and spirit of ‘Play.’

The exhibit is up through May, and gallery hours are 10-5 daily.

See you soon!

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Potomac Clay Weekend: get out and explore your rivers!

PotomacClayPoster

The Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers are waiting for you.  The C&O Canal and Appalachian Trail are in wildflower bloom.  Get out and explore!  By connecting with our own waterways, our watershed, we find a contentment and richness in or lives…it’s worth it.

***Potomac Clay Weekend Map***

Kirke Martin and M4 Studios, Bill Van Gilder Pottery, Lisa Kovatch Pottery, Pam and Ren Parziale and Sycamore Pottery, and Joy Bridy Pottery are all in their studios this weekend, looking forward to hearing about your adventures along the rivers and trails, and showing you their newest works.  See Pam’s traditional brushwork of birds, Lisa’s stylized carvings of nature’s vines and birds, Bill’s huts inspired by his time in Africa, Kirke’s wood fired aesthetics paired with spring’s branches, and Joy’s kinetic sculptures in action (workshop Sunday at noon).

And while you’re out and about, it’s also the second annual South Mountain Festival, the 7th annual Panhandle Earth Day Celebration at Morgans Grove Park, Stony Field Farm’s kickoff farm day, Harpers Ferry Bolivar Art Walk, and the Jefferson and Berkeley County House and Garden Tour, for starts.  Something for everyone on this gorgeous April weekend….see you out there!

Profile: Joy Bridy Pottery

Artist potter by trade, community member at heart, Joy Bridy Pottery sits among the rocks and trees of a few small acres, keeping the connections between art and nature thriving and growing in her own studio and in the hearts of those around her.

Joy Bridy Pottery

Her passions are in the exploratory moments of making, whether in the repetitive variations of getting to know a form over time, or in the impromptu making explosion of taking clay to young people.  The wood fired kiln that she designed and built lends a complexity to the surface of her work that draws directly from nature, and allows the collaboration between fire and clay to be evident on the surface of the pots, for those looking closely.

Joy Bridy Pottery: bottle

On April 26, as part of Potomac Clay Weekend, Joy is offering a ‘kinetic sculpture’ workshop….bring your nature finds from your hikes and explorations, and use clay as the balance to make a mobile, either suspended from above, or balanced on a point.  ($25 per mobile, groups or solo, all ages welcome)

Just a few miles from both the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers, she is an avid walker of the C&O Canal, partly because her pooch insists on regular visits, and partly because the repetition of walking the same piece of nature draws her attention to the details and subtle changes of the seasons.  Stop in to see Joy and (and Buddy the studio pooch) during Potomac Clay Weekend, April 25 & 26, and catch a glimpse into her blend of nature and function, making and being.

dutchmans britches