Saanich potter Meira Mathison is one of nearly 30 artists participating in Create Local: Tackle Global

Saanich potter part of Belfry art show supporting female empowerment

Saanich potter one of many artists supporting female empowerment issues at exhibit

A Saanich potter is one of more than two dozen artists who are using their art to raise awareness for female empowerment issues in a new exhibit.

Meira Mathison is one of the artists in Create Local: Tackle Global, a weekend exhibit of artwork from about 30 Vancouver Island painters, sculptors and jewellers. The show is being hosted at Victoria’s Belfry Theatre in collaboration with the Didi Society – a local non-profit that addresses issues of gender inequality and discrimination – and the individual artists.

For Mathison, who fell in love with pottery almost 40 years ago, the exhibit’s theme of empowerment was broad but relatable.

“When they talk about the theme of women’s empowerment, it’s very difficult to make something that relates directly to that,” she said. “It’s kind of a weird way of putting it, but for me, the making of clay empowers myself.

“We all have challenges in life. I was a single mom for many years, and the clay kept me on track.”

Mathison, who owns Dancerwood Pottery, designed a basket-form pot for the exhibit, showcasing her style that incorporates movement into her pieces.

“I use really thick liquid clay to give the extra depth and dimension to the pots,” she said. “In the surface of the pots, they have lots of lines, which usually goes with the form.

“I also push in coloured imprints of plants. I’m a gardener – I grew up on a small farm in Saanich. My mom was really involved with the rose club and the dahlia club, so I grew up loving flowers and plants and working the soil. My pots reflect some of the plant forms.”

The pot took a few months to make, due to the lengthy process involved to maintain the asymmetrical shape of the piece, Mathison said.

“The drying process is always a challenge. Clay has a memory and it tries to pull itself apart, so in the drying process, if it’s dried too fast, it can crack.”

Mathison’s basket-form pot, as well as pieces from the other artists involved, will be on sale, priced under or around $1,000. Twenty-five per cent of each sale will go to the Didi Society while the rest will go to the artists.

“This one-of-a-kind exhibit is a great opportunity to begin or grow your art collection, support local artists, and help the Didi Society in its work to empower women globally and educate youth locally about gender equality,” said Julia Norman, executive director the society, in a statement.

Prior to the weekend exhibit, the Belfry Theatre is hosting an opening reception on Friday, March 4 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets for the reception are $25 and are available at the Belfry Theatre box office, located at 1291 Gladstone Ave.

Admission is free to the exhibit on March 5 and 6, which runs from noon to 5 p.m. both days.

For ticketing info regarding the opening reception, call the theatre at 250-385-6815 or email boxoffice@belfry.bc.ca. For more information about the Didi Society, visit thedidisociety.org.

jacob.zinn@saanichnews.com

Mathison, who owns Dancerwood Pottery, designed a basket-form pot for the exhibit, showcasing her style that incorporates movement into her pieces.

“I use really thick liquid clay to give the extra depth and dimension to the pots,” she said. “In the surface of the pots, they have lots of lines, which usually goes with the form.

“I also push in coloured imprints of plants. I’m a gardener – I grew up on a small farm in Saanich. My mom was really involved with the rose club and the dahlia club, so I grew up loving flowers and plants and working the soil. My pots reflect some of the plant forms.”

The pot took a few months to make, due to the lengthy process involved to maintain the asymmetrical shape of the piece, Mathison said.

“The drying process is always a challenge. Clay has a memory and it tries to pull itself apart, so in the drying process, if it’s dried too fast, it can crack.”

Mathison’s basket-form pot, as well as pieces from the other artists involved, will be on sale, priced under or around $1,000. Twenty-five per cent of each sale will go to the Didi Society while the rest will go to the artists.

“This one-of-a-kind exhibit is a great opportunity to begin or grow your art collection, support local artists, and help the Didi Society in its work to empower women globally and educate youth locally about gender equality,” said Julia Norman, executive director the society, in a statement.

Prior to the weekend exhibit, the Belfry Theatre is hosting an opening reception on Friday, March 4 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets for the reception are $25 and are available at the Belfry Theatre box office, located at 1291 Gladstone Ave.

Admission is free to the exhibit on March 5 and 6, which runs from noon to 5 p.m. both days.

For ticketing info regarding the opening reception, call the theatre at 250-385-6815 or email boxoffice@belfry.bc.ca. For more information about the Didi Society, visit thedidisociety.org.

jacob.zinn@saanichnews.com

 

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