Winter 2020 - Alberta Craft Magazine

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JAN UARY - AP R I L 2020

New and Renewing Members (as of January 1, 2020)

NEW MEMBERS Jerry-Lynn Apsassin, Edmonton, Traditional Arts Cheryl Baile, High River, Fibre Fernande Beland, Edmonton, Clay Violet Berland, Frog Lake, Traditional Arts Richard Boulet, Edmonton, Fibre Jennifer Bourret, Edmonton, Glass Kayla Brown, Provost, Glass Denis Bugnet, Sturgson County, Wood & Stone Kim Burns, Millarville, Fibre, Paper Susan Burrows-Johnson, Lethbridge, Supporter Stephen Capp, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery Carrie Carbol-Ritcey, Edmonton, Metal - Jewellery Vanessa Carney, Calgary, Metal Claudine Charlery, Edmonton, Jewellery Bobbi Clackson-Walker, Saskatoon, Mixed Media Annique Comeau Shields, Edmonton, Clay Fiona Coulliard,Calgary, Metal, Fibre Cody Cox, Calgary, Wood Blair & Sarah Dawes, Calgary, Clay Mary Devries, Duffield, Fibre Melanie Dorian, Medicine Hat, Clay Leanne Dubray, Calgary, Clay Nancy Dumont, Edmonton, Stone Stephanie Elderfield, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery Shania Elliott, Foothills, Glass Robert Frender, Edmonton, Supporter Alex Gilroy, Edmonton, Fibre Shaelin Ginther, Calgary, Clay Celine Godberson,Calgary, Supporter Brandi Goddard, Edmonton, Supporter Bailey Gorman,Calgary, Fibre Meghan Gould, Calgary, Ceramics, Fibre Kelsey Donna Gray, Calgary, Clay, Fibre, Metal Leia Guo, Calgary, Glass Sublime True Craft Artisan Market, Calgary Deb Haug, Sherwood Park, Metal Suzanne Hawkes, Red Deer County, Clay Shiemara Hogarth, Calgary, Fibre Jami Hughes, Calgary, Metal Karen Jackson, Calgary, Suporter James Kibugi, Edmonton, Clay, Wood, Fibre Angeline Lee, Entwistle, Clay Lana Lovo, Calgary, Supporter Laurel Lowe, Coleman, Clay Fenn Martin, Calgary, Clay Karen Martinoski, Red Deer County, Fibre Gina Mason, Edmonton, Supporter Kim McCollum, Edmonton, Fibre Georgina Metzler, Calgary, Wood, Fibre, Paper Lorna Mutegyeki, Edmonton, Fibre, Curator Robin Nixon, Okotoks, Fibre Abigail Pederson, Sherwood Park, Clay Adrien Pool, Calgary, Wood Charlotte Poulsom, Calgary, Glass Christine Powell,Edmonton, Supporter Chloe’s Café, Edmonton, Supporter Kaleb Romano, Edmonton, Clay Sergiy Ryabchemok, Edmonton, Metal & Enamel Helen Sachs, Edmonton, Supporter Heidi Schreiner, Edmonton, Clay Gavin Semple, Calgary, Supporter Peter Sloan,Masset, Mixed - Jewellery Rosemary A Smith, Edmonton, Supporter


Emelyne Smith, Calgary, Fibre, Paper Noreen Soneff, Edmonton, Supporter Hope Sorokan, Red Deer, Supporter Cynthia Stratulat, Calgary, Fibre Robin Tardiff, Calgary, Glass Lewis Trimmer, Edmonton, Supporter Wendy Twin, Kinuso, Metal, Paper Catherine Voisin, Edmonton, Clay Angel Weber, Saskatoon, Fibre, Mixed media Emily West, Airdrie, Clay Jeannette Wheeler,Calgary,Supporter Debbie Wilson, Red Deer County, Clay Eli Young, Mirror, Supporter

RENEWING MEMBERS Edmonton Weavers’ Guild, Edmonton, Organization Jackie Anderson, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery & Sculpture Blain Askew, Grande Prairie, Wood Rose Bauer, Rocky Mountain House, Clay, Wood, Fibre Gust Gallery, Waterton, Supporter Carmen Belanger, Calgary, Clay Helene Blanchet, Margaree Valley, Fibre Gillian Boone, Calgary, Clay Paul Boultbee, Red Deer, Paper, Canvas Gary Burkholder, Beaumont, Glass Sharon Busby, Edmonton, Clay C. Dana Bush, Calgary, Fibre, Paper, Wood Cec Caswell, Sherwood Park, Fibre Barbara Cockrall, Edmonton, Supporter Red Deer College, Red Deer Fran Cuyler, Edmonton, Clay, Stone Leslie Delanty, Calgary, Fibre Teena Dickerson, Delburn, Metal - Jewellery, Clay Elaine Emerson,Edmonton, Supporter Native Arts & Culture Program, Portage College, Lac La Biche Trudy Golley & Paul Leathers, Red Deer, Clay Susan Fae Haglund, Calgary, Fibre Fay Hodson, Bragg Creek, Fibre, Paper, Stone, Clay Tobla Howell, Calgary, Clay Michael James, Edmonton, Wood Barb Johnston, Edmonton, Paper Pirkko Karvonen, Boyle, Fibre Angela Keating, Calgary, Glass Wendy Klotz, Calgary, Clay, Fibre Anita Nawrocki, Edmonton, Mixed Media Mireille Perron, Calgary, Mixed Media Sharon Rubuliak, Sherwood Park, Fibre Katherine Russell, Elkford, Glass Joan Sandham, Calgary, Clay Alireza Shafaati, Edmonton, Wood Natalie Sharpe, Edmonton, Supporter Donna Spencer, Lacombe, Clay Marianne Stewart, Edmonton, Supporter Christine Thomson, Calgary, Fibre, Paper Kathleen Tomyn, Edmonton, Supporter Judy Weiss, Edmonton, Fibre Melody Williamson, Calgary, Supporter Sara Young, Cochrane, Fibre Chris Zinkan, Calgary, Clay

NEW PROFESSIONAL MEMBERS Michelle Atkinson, Calgary, Glass Nadine Fenton, Montreal, Metal - Jewellery


ALBERTA CRAFT MAGAZINE RENEWING PROFESSIONAL MEMBERS Mindy Andrews, Calgary, Clay Breanne Avender, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery Carissa M.E. Baktay, Calgary, Glass Pat Borecky, Comox, Fibre Tracy Brown, Edmonton, Metal - Jewellery Sarabeth Carnat, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery Constance Cooper, Calgary, Clay Nicole Coursen, Edmonton, Fibre Susan Crawford, Calgary, Fibre Albertine Crow Shoe, Brocket, Jewellery Margie Davidson, Qualicum Beach, Fibre Robin DuPont, Winlaw, Clay Mason Eyben, Vermillion, Wood Caroline Forde, Calgary, Fibre, Paper Marcia Fossey, Edmonton, Jewellery Mike Fournier, Edmonton, Wood Jennea Frischke, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery Andrew Glazebrook, Red Deer County, Wood Matt Gould, Red Deer, Fibre Leah Gravells, Edmonton, Fibre Darcy Gusse-Edinga, Red Deer, Fibre Terry Hildebrand, Winnipeg, Clay, Wood Jeff Holmwood,Crawford Bay, Glass Darcy Hoover, Edmonton, Fibre Barbara Howe, Calgary, Clay Kenton Jeske, Edmonton, Wood Ted Jolda, Ladysmith, Glass Akiko Kohana, Edmonton, Clay Eveline Kolijn, Calgary, Paper, Printmaking Jamie Kroeger, Golden, Metal - Jewellery Mike Lam, Edmonton, Wood JoAnna Lange, Edmonton, Clay Joan Matsusaki, Bragg Creek, Clay Rita McGie, Sherwood Park, Clay Lisa McGrath, Calgary, Clay Wendy McPeak, Ardrossan, Glass Candice Meyer, Red Deer, Metal Dan Miller, Edmonton, Clay Benjamin Oswald, Edmonton, Clay, Stone Joraan Overland, Edmonton, Metal Pauline Pelletier, Quebec, Clay Brenda Philp, Edmonton, Fibre Jean-Claude & Talar Prefontaine, Calgary, Wood Julia Reimer & Tyler Rock, Black Diamond, Glass Daryl Richardson, Saskatoon, Metal, Wood Sharon Rose Kootenay, Vilna, Fibre Amy Skrocki, Edmonton, Jewellery, Leather, Wood Darlene Storgeoff, Edmonton, Glass Fei Su, Edmonton, Metal, Wood Susan Thorpe, Calgary, Clay Barbara Tipton, Port Moody, Clay Allison Tunis, Edmonton, Fibre Sam Uhlick, Ardrossan, Clay Allan Waidman, Calgary, Stone Tarra Wedman, Fallis, Clay Kari Woo, Canmore, Metal - Jewellery Simon Wroot, Calgary, Metal - Jewellery & Sculpture

The Alberta Craft Magazine is published three times a year. Submission deadline for May - August 2020 issue: March 15, 2020 The Alberta Craft Magazine makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information contained herein but assumes no liability in cases of error of changing conditions. Any business relation or other activity undertaken as a result of the information contained in the Alberta Craft Magazine, or arising there from, are the responsibility of the parties involved and not of the Alberta Craft Council.

ALBERTA CRAFT COUNCIL Main Office Edmonton: Monday - Friday 10am to 5pm 780-488-6611 OR 1-800-DO-CRAFT E-mail ALBERTA CRAFT GALLERY - EDMONTON 10186 – 106 Street. Edmonton, AB, Canada T5J 1H4 Monday – Saturday 10am - 5pm Open until 6pm on Thursday 780-488-5900 ALBERTA CRAFT GALLERY - CALGARY 1721 – 29 Avenue SW, Suite #280 Calgary, AB, Canada T2T 6T7 Wednesday – Friday 11am - 5pm Saturday 10am - 5pm 587-391-0129 STAFF Executive Director - Jenna Stanton, ext. 228 EDMONTON Gallery Shop Coordinator - Rael Lockwood, ext. 232 Operations & Exhibitions - Joanne Hamel, ext. 234 Fund Development & Special Projects - Saskia Aarts ext 231 Exhibitions & Memberships - Jessica Telford , ext. 221 Marketing & Design - Victoria Sanchez, ext. 231 Financial Officer - Wendy Arrowsmith, ext. 234 Gallery Shop Assistant - Felicity Bohnet CALGARY Gallery Shop Coordinator - Corinne Cowell Outreach, Events & Volunteers - Jill Nuckles Gallery Shop Assistant - Melanie Archer BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chair Tara Owen (Calgary) Vice Chair Dawn Deterando (Red Deer) Directors Mary-Beth Laviolette (Canmore), Dawn Saunders-Dahl (Canmore), Kari Woo (Canmore), Jennifer Salahub (Calgary), Meghan Wagg (Edmonton), Natali Rodrigues (Calgary), Kayla Gale (Calgary, AU Arts Student Liaison) MAGAZINE Editor: Jessica Telford Contributors: Jenna Stanton, Joanne Hamel, Corinne Cowell, Saskia Aarts, Victoria Sanchez Design: Victoria Sanchez

The Alberta Craft Council is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to developing Alberta Craft and the Alberta Craft Industry.



This Issue

It’s amazing to think of how things have changed in the last four decades in the world and the field of craft, particularly around technology and how we connect and communicate. Craft continues to engage makers, upholding cultural traditions, passing on and expanding skills, creative thinking, social justice, community building, with skilled artists at the forefront exploring material and new technology. We are fortunate to have Alberta Craft magazine, it’s an important way to connect, tell our stories and physical record of our history (we are the last remaining Craft Council to publish a provincial magazine). We regularly look to back issues for our organizational history, past exhibitions, and events. Reflections continued this winter, generating great conversations about the amazing staff, members, and partners who dedicated their passion and creativity to this organization over the past 40 years. Our first feature exhibition of the year, Making: a career in craft shares the career paths behind the works created. These ‘case studies’ are not a singular answer, rather but they offer deeper insight into a few of the many paths taken. The case studies encourage discussion and share ideas amongst makers, they enlighten our audiences, and further our advocacy for the sector.

On the cover: Line sculpture by Benjamin Oswald. 2019. Porcelain. Photo credit: Lance Burns. Read about Making: a career in craft on page 8 & 9

The Alberta Craft Council’s 40th anniversary year also happens to be Craft Year 2020, a nation-wide celebration coordinated to highlight the rich variety of craft events and exhibitions across the country. Craft Year is led by the Canadian Crafts Federation (CCF) in partnership with the provincial and territorial Craft Councils. Rooted in education, connection, and dialogue about the world of craft, Craft Year is an awareness campaign, highlighting the dynamic craft scene in Canada, and a platform for forging new connections between craft artists, supporters, and the public-at-large. Activity for Craft Year includes a national gathering in Saskatoon for internal meetings with the CCF, provincial and territorial Craft Councils, and a one-day public symposium 10 Digit Technology - Understanding material and digital realities on March 7, 2020. The Alberta Craft Council is also working with the Canadian Crafts Federation on a Canada Council digital strategy grant project. During phase one of the project, Forum Research will work to capture a more complete picture of the needs of artists and how to better connect with the public. Back to the big 4-0! We have a few birthday presents for our members this anniversary year. We are developing new professional development opportunities to create a more resilient community of makers to regularly connect, learn, and share their own experiences and expertise. We are launching ongoing Craft Tours to build exciting new partnerships and to get our artists and supporters behind the scenes at some of Alberta’s great museums, collections, and creative spaces. We will also continue our partnership with CARFAC Alberta presenting webinars to feature and connect with members across the province. There are even more exciting partnerships on the horizon that we look forward to sharing with you throughout the year. The past 40 years have given us a solid foundation to build upon. We are both humbled by the past and excited for our collective future and what we can achieve together. A





Jenna Stanton Executive Director



NEWS Twas the Night Many thanks to everyone who came out to the 22nd ‘Twas the Night celebration! This was one of our most successful events and we couldn’t have done it without our amazing craft supporters, volunteers and sponsors. This year Tea Cup Productions and Rapid Fire Theatre brought the auction’s entertainment to a new level. A very special thank you to the following artists and organizations for their generous donations: Admeyer Arts, Nicole Baxter, Clo’s Leather General Store, Frankie FBR, Lisa Head-Harbidge, Kenton Jeske, James Lavoie, Naked Frames, Sarah Pike, Shona Rae, Irene Rasetti, Natali Rodrigues, Dana Roman, Kaleb Romano, Todd Safronovich, Annette ten Cate, Edmonton Folk Festival, Edmonton Opera, Fern’s School of Craft, Plaza Bowling Co., Pause Photography + Design, and SNAP. To our volunteers, thank you for making the evening run smoothly, and bringing your joyous smiles and energy: Sharon Rose Kootenay, Karen Cumming, Jolene Fennema, Jen Harris, Sheila Hayley, Dawna Dey Harrish, Darcy Hoover, Alicia Lakey, Sabine MacLeod, Dan Miller, Loreen Riley, Sharon Rubuliak, Shirley Serviss, Jelle Spijker, and board member Meghan Wagg. Special thanks to Collective Arts, Strathcona Distillery, and our own Wendy Arrowsmith (catering) for elevating our food and drink game this year!

Let it Snow November 23rd marked the start for our holiday fundraising events, beginning with a very sweet 3rd annual Let it Snow in Calgary’s cSPACE - King Edward. Musical stylings by Erin Ross, Wildlife Distillery cocktails, and catering by My Kitchen contributed to a successful event with an incredible 200 craft enthusiasts in attendance! We wish to thank everyone who donated their stunning fine craft, as well as those who gifted us with their time to make the evening such a success. Thank you to the following artists: Holly Boone, Taygan Crapo, Caroline Forde, Rob Froese, Matt Gould, Crys Harse, Lisa Head Harbidge, Leanne Keyes, James Lavoie, Linda McBain-Cuyler, Alma Newton, Corey Porterfield, Judy Sysak, Annette ten Cate, Nicole Tremblay, and Julie Wons. And thank you to this year’s volunteers: Wendy Arrowsmith, James Bazant, Aileen Beninger, Louise Brud, Todd Duquette, Zoe Duquette, Jenn Lake, Jil McMahon Bazant, Laura Plathan, Anna Scherger, Monika Smith, Lynda Snider, Darlene Swan, Amanda Wong, Julie Wons, Simon Wroot, and photographer Jeff Yee.


Top to bottom: Simon Mallet & Tara Owen at Rozsa Awards 2019. ‘Twas the Night photo by Pause Photography . Let it Snow photo by Jeff Yee

Craft Lovers Unite! Board Chair, Tara Owen honoured by Rozsa Foundation In the 19 years Tara Owen has served on the Alberta Craft Council board (in the last six years as board chair), Tara’s strong, steady leadership has steered the organization through times of growth and transition. In particular, her leadership proved to be invaluable when longtime ED Tom McFall retired and we opened a second location in Calgary in 2017. It’s no secret within the Alberta craft community what a gem Tara is and it’s wonderful to see her receive recognition from the esteemed Rozsa Foundation. At the Rozsa Awards ceremony held by the Rozsa Foundation on October 28, 2019, Tara Owen was announced as the inaugural recipient of the 2019 Rozsa Award for Excellence in Board Leadership. Tara was nominated for the award by Jenna Stanton, Alberta Craft Council ED and board member Jennifer Salahub. “I am extremely honoured to have received the Rozsa Foundation’s Award for Excellence in Board Leadership. It’s hard to express in words how proud I am, every day, to lead the Alberta Craft Council as the board chair. Or to adequately state how much I’ve been inspired by smart, kind people, and lifted up by generous and knowledgeable luminaries. I can only say a deeply humble thank you for the welcome recognition of contributions that board members make in encouraging excellence in the arts, and paving the way for the next generation of leaders.” – Tara Owen The Rozsa Awards were created to honour the philanthropy of Drs. Ted and Lola Rozsa who combined their love of the arts with an insistence upon good business practice. The Rozsa Awards are an annual event recognizing and supporting the individual and collective excellence of Arts Managers, Board Chairs and their organizations. Since 2003, the Rozsa Foundation has presented the Rozsa Award for Excellence in Arts Management for Arts Managers and in 2019, it introduced a new award called the Rozsa Award for Excellence in Board Leadership for board chairs. The Rozsa Awards are unique in Canada because of the value and variety of benefits they provide. Through the provision of a monetary prize, public profile, and educational and professional development opportunities; the Rozsa Awards combine recognition of individual excellence and support for the recipient’s arts organizations. The award comes with a $10,000 contribution to the Alberta Craft Council, and professional development with the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and other Rozsa partners and sponsors. The Alberta Craft Council staff and board are so proud and grateful for all the work that Tara has accomplished for the Council and our members.

As we enter a new decade and celebrate our 40th anniversary, the Alberta Craft Council is excited to introduce two new membership categories to our roster, the Craft Lover and Craft Professional Emeritus. We are looking forward to welcoming even more supporters into our craft community and show our appreciation for our veteran professional members.

The Craft Lover

This is for our ever-growing crowd of supporters, patrons, customers, and collectors who also believe in Alberta Craft Council’s mandate to support, promote and advocate for fine craft in Alberta. Craft Lovers will, like all our members, be the first to receive invites to Alberta Craft Council events. Their subscription to Alberta Craft magazine will keep them informed and connected to Alberta craft artists and Craft Council activities. To show our thanks for their choice to buy and support local craft, Craft Lovers receive a 10% discount on all purchases from the Alberta Craft Gallery - Edmonton & Calgary. The Craft Lover membership is an affordable $40 for one year.

Craft Professional Emeritus

Alongside the new Craft Lovers category, we are also introducing a new Craft Professional membership option for working senior craft artists. The Craft Professional Emeritus option is open to those who are working craft professionals who are 60 years+ and meet our professional membership criteria. Craft Professional Emeritus will receive the same membership perks as Professional members. This includes reduced (and in some instances free) participation prices on professional development events such as craft tours, talks and webinars as well as a subscription to Alberta Craft and Studio magazine. Those who are current Professional members and are 60 years+ are eligible to renew at the new reduced rate. The Craft Professional Emeritus membership is $60 one year / $110 two year.

To read more about our recent updates and sign up for membership visit The Alberta craft sector is a vibrant mix of creative, skilled, viable, and sustainable craftspeople, studios, businesses, and networks. So many opportunities for our members have come from our partnerships and connections with businesses and organizations province-wide and beyond. The Alberta Craft Council strives to increase networking opportunities for all our members. By widening our circle and increasing opportunities for our membership to connect, we all collectively benefit.





COVETED CRAFT Jewellery has the capacity to spark a conversation. It is a reflection of what we value, aesthetically and physically. Gold, silver and other metals and alloys -combined with materials made by man and found in nature - give way to a most ancient form of adornment. Today, jewellery and metal artists keep exploring techniques that have been passed on from generation to generation, and others invent new ways of playing with what metal can do, and what jewellery can be.

With over 150 artists featured in our downtown Edmonton Gallery Shop and 65 artists in our Calgary Gallery Shop at cSPACE King Edward, the Alberta Craft Council has presented fine craft to visitors in a wide array of styles, techniques, and unique expressions of creativity for the past 40 years.




Coveted Craft is our in-shop feature where we showcase a selection of objects that we hope will inspire you to bring craft into your daily life.

Shop for these items at the Alberta Craft Gallery Shop Edmonton & Calgary. Pendant by Sarabeth Carnat. Copper, silver, patina $450 brooch/sculpture by Karen Cantine. Silver, $250 3 Ring by Fei Su. Ebony, silver $106 4 Brooch by Charles Lewton-Brain. Foldformed, copper, silver, 24k gold $480 5 Ring by Joraan Overland. Silver $280 6 Cuff by Erik Lee. Silver $1375 1

2 Vessel

*photos not to scale




The Story Behind the Object… from the hands of makers to their impactful giving The meaning imbued in fine craft objects is ingrained in the materials, skills, and inspiration of the makers. Once objects leave the hands of their maker, they have the capacity of taking on unpredicted significance for others. New histories are created as they are chosen, cherished, and exist as future heirlooms. We often hear wonderful evocative stories from object makers and craft supporters about the significance of a particular craft artifact, so we have created a space to share some of these stories with you.

Behind the scenes at the Alberta Craft Council, our financial officer Wendy Arrowsmith has a great object story to start this new series with. It starts several years ago, Wendy’s daughter Alicia was traveling abroad and suffered a life changing injury to her foot, local doctors assessed that her foot needed amputation but thought it best to have the surgery done back in Canada. The doctors in Canada weren’t so sure, so Alicia, dealt with years of chronic pain, bone infections, mobility and mental health challenges, impeding Alicia’s own medical studies and active lifestyle. We are often reminded of just how small

and connected our worlds can be. Alicia’s brother Ben was studying biomedical engineering and was involved in a new prosthetics company. Through his work he met Dr. Carty, a surgeon in Boston during the tragic marathon bombings. It was through this tragedy and dealing with so many cases at once Dr. Carty was able to revolutionize the practice, preparing patients limbs and nerves for the emerging new technology in robotic prosthetics. Alicia met with him and was accepted into his trials, and had her foot amputated in the fall of 2019. Alicia regained more than she lost, she had a renewed sense of hope for her quality of life and her future, she slowly regained her health, energy, mobility, and her independence. What gift could possibly convey the immense appreciation held for Dr. Carty and the impact he has had on the lives of so many, thanks to his great compassion, ingenuity and dedication?

When Wendy took it to Alicia for her approval, she gasped, “It’s beautiful mom!” She picked it up, her hands moving around the smooth, sloped sides, her fingers gently tracing the crack, pausing over the staples. “It’s amazing how the flaws in the wood make the piece that much more special! It’s going to be like me after I lose my foot, I’ll have some scars and look a bit different - but that will just tell the story of what I have been through, just like this object.” When Alicia handed Dr. Carty the bowl, he was in awe of the “flaws” that made this piece so stunning. He teared up as he read what Alicia had written – “Dear Dr. Carty, I hope that every time you look at this bowl it will remind you how our imperfections make us all more beautiful and how grateful I am for you giving me my life back.“

Share your craft object stories with us. Email with Wendy searched the Alberta Craft your story and a photo of the object. Gallery for the perfect gift and soon The Alberta Craft Council will share found it - a large wooden bowl crafted select object stories via social media by Dave Dunkley, with a crack on one side and in Alberta Craft magazine. held together with handmade copper staples. The gallery staff explained the Japanese aesthetic of Wabi-Sabi and Wooden Bowl by Dave Dunkley. Kintsugi, explaining the view that a Photo supplied by Evetty Photography. (The photographer, Nicole Mahararaj, is artist Dave Dunkley’s daughter. This particular bowl also repaired object shows care, value, and happens to be her favourite bowl made by her Dad.) unique beauty in it’s visible history. The bowl was perfect!


Making: a career in craft

In craft, careers are as varied as the objects created, and each artist has their own unique career story to tell. Ushering in the Alberta Craft Council’s 40th anniversary and the nationwide celebration Craft Year 2020, Making: a career in craft shares the career stories of 21 fine craft artists. Being creative isn’t limited to the making of work. Craft artists are often some of the most business savvy and innovative folks out there, each with their own diverse mix of revenue streams. Craft is often heavy on research and development; a lot of work happens behind the scenes before new work reaches the public. The level of creativity, determination, focus and ingenuity it takes to successfully refine and perfect the design of a piece, can similarly be applied to other areas of one’s practice.

Alberta Craft Feature Gallery - Edmonton: February 1 - April 25, 2020 Artist Reception: Saturday, February 8, 2020 Alberta Craft Gallery - Calgary: June 6 - August 29, 2020


Carissa Baktay Nicole Baxter Tony Bloom Albertine Crow Shoe Shawn Cunningham Fern Facette James Lavoie Erik Lee Brenda Malkinson James Marshall Benjamin Oswald Christine Pedersen


Darren Petersen Shona Rae Dana Roman Amy & Tanner Skrocki Annette ten Cate Barbara Tipton Allison Tunis Keith Walker Kari Woo


this page: Little lies, Carissa Baktay opposite page: studio of Fern Facette .

Just as it is important for an artist to share their work with others, it is also as important to share the lesser known and understood aspects of an artist’s practice – the challenges, the eventual breakthroughs, and lessons learned.

“In addition to my personal studio practice, I currently teach ceramics full-time to high school students in Edmonton. I started out as a physics teacher and taught physics and chemistry for nearly 20 years. A pivotal career moment happened about five years ago when I started a ceramics class at the current high school I teach at. Over the next several years, the student enrollment skyrocketed, and I stepped down as the department head of science and now teach ceramics fulltime.” – Benjamin Oswald

itself: there was no longer a glass studio in Iceland. This marked a pivotal shift in my glass-based practice as I started working with horsehair as a material proxy for glass. Echoing one another aesthetically, this partnership inspired new paths within my practice.” – Carissa Baktay

Creative careers can take interesting twists and turns, and what may initially seem like a tangent or momentary distraction can become one of the most rewarding and lasting career directions. Taking a leap into the unknown from more familiar ground can be frightening but also profoundly revitalizing.

from the Kootenay School of the Arts Cooperative in 1998 and her BFA with distinction in the year 2000 from AUArts. Shona Rae has won numerous national and international awards, government grants and attention for her sculptural art in Europe and North America.

Shona Rae was a professional clay sculptor before a series of dreams led her to begin studying goldsmithing and the metal arts in 1994. She received her Diploma in Applied Art and Design

Whether you are a maker or a supporter, we can all learn from one another. The exchange of ideas and imaginative solutions is an integral part of a healthy creative community. Fern Facette has been making textiles for nearly two decades. She started with crocheting and knitting and recently completed the Master Weaver Level 2 at Olds College. Since 2012, Fern has sold her woven creations at the Royal Bison Art & Craft Fair in Edmonton. She recently founded Fern’s School of Craft, and is also a professional photographer. “After years of selling woven items at Royal Bison Art & Craft Fair, so many people were asking if I taught lessons. And so, after a few subsequent years of collecting used looms, saving money and planning how to do this thing, Fern’s School of Craft began. At first it was just me, now we have eight instructors! I’m proud that our team of collaborators includes POC/LGBTQ/ gender non-binary folks. Props to ALL my passionate craft instructors who are also opinionated moms, climate activists, university techs and civil servants.” – Fern Facette Shifting from teaching science and from working in stone, Benjamin Oswald’s career has progressively come to focus on ceramics. With the goal of creating more contemporary designs, Benjamin has moved from throwing and glazing earthenware bowls and vases; to porcelain, mold making, slip casting, and material manipulation. Benjamin continues to evolve his own ceramics practice through Emily Carr University of Art + Design’s Low Residency MFA program.

Carissa Baktay is a glass artist from Calgary who lives and works in both Canada and Iceland. Carissa earned a BFA in Glass from the Alberta University of the Arts (formerly Alberta College of Art + Design), studied at The Rhode Island School of Design and received her Master in Glass Art and Science from VICARTE Research Unit in Portugal.

“Allow yourself to be open to new ways of thinking. Live closer to the edge and force yourself to leave your safe place. Listen to your heart. Believe in your dreams. Do not allow yourself to live in fear of failure, instead, it is important to have faith that the universe wants you to succeed. Why would you receive a gift if you were not meant to use it? Be your own Hero.” – Shona Rae

“I am lucky to have had the opportunity to live in many different countries around the world, and with each new culture comes a new set of obstacles, creating new paths (or rocky terrain) in my process. I started visiting Iceland more frequently and for longer periods in 2018 when a new obstacle presented

As we enter a new decade, it is a natural time to take pause and to reflect on where we’ve been and where we hope our journey will take us next. May you too find inspiration and encouragement in the stories artists have so generously shared as part of this exhibition. A



The Spaces

Between Alberta Craft Discovery Gallery - Edmonton January 18 - February 29, 2020 Alberta Craft Gallery - Calgary March 28 - May 30, 2020

The Spaces Between is an exhibition about the absent spaces that surround us in life. They are spaces that make us feel something. They bring us together, make us question our lives, fill us with curiosity, and help us grieve after loss. This exhibition is an intersection between handblown glass, photography, video, and interactive art, blurring the lines between fine craft and contemporary art. The majority of Leah’s studio practice revolves around the idea of absence, specifically in regard to negative space. She uses sculpted glass as a material to fill the voids between people and objects. The concept guides her use of materials. “I am fascinated by the way that the absence of something often becomes highlighted solely because of the fact that something or someone no longer exists. The absence in a sense materializes. I attempt to highlight the negative spaces between people through the use of objects that initiate uncanny social interactions.”

Now based in Edmonton, Leah has returned to Canada after spending four years travelling the globe working as a professional glassblower. Leah has worked as an artist in studios across the USA, New Zealand, Italy, Czech Republic, Indonesia, Fiji, Denmark, United Arab Emirates, and Croatia. In 2015, she achieved a Bachelor of Fine Art in Glass from Alberta University of the Arts and in 2002, Leah earned a Bachelor of Art Education from the University of Alberta. Leah has a strong dedication and passion for glass and is the recipient of multiple project grants and scholarships. She was recently awarded a Bonhams Prize special jury commendation during the 2019 Venice Glass week for her large-scale sculpture created through the Autonoma Factory with five other artists from across the globe. She was also a contestant on the Netflix series Blown Away: Season 1, a high stakes glassblowing competition. Outside of television, her creations have been included in exhibitions in Canada, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, the United Kingdom, the USA, Italy, and New Zealand. Top to bottom: The space between myself and I. Photo by Joe Kelly. Unlanded. Photo by Logan Groupé . Let’s not. Photo by Christin Lappan



Ceramica Botanica Alberta Craft Discovery Gallery - Edmonton March 7 - April 18, 2020 Reception: Saturday, March 7 from 2-4pm Artist Talk at 2:30pm

Bridget Fairbank makes pottery, installation art, and orchestrates happenings- all of which aim for the re-imagining of everyday actions and relations. Her items act sometimes as objects of irony, sometimes as objects of intimacy and sometimes as a means to an educational end. In this case the exhibition Ceramic Botanica: A Constant and Misguided Optimism does all three. The handcrafted object is now the subversive object. Flowers and plants have long been codified and are powerful communicative objects. Fairbank’s past work considers flora, wild or domestic, as a living witness to humanity. Now she asks the viewer to witness the plants, invasive, local and exotic that are attempting to exist, cleaning our air, having sex and fighting for survival here in Alberta. See Albertan Rose, Indian Paintbrush, Goldenrod, Common Yarrow, Canola, Saskatoons, Blueberry and Sweetberry Honeysuckle. Through the still life she requests we consider their useful historical properties and their roles in our current landscape. These plants are respectively a provincial icon, metaphor for prairie fire, a token of luck, a means to staunch a bleeding wound, the industrial backbone, a cure for cough and a cure for cold etc. What is your place among them? In this stark time, we are now culturally primed to connect with nature and nurture the fate of the human condition. This fire season marks Fairbank’s tenth year spotting wildfires in Northern Alberta. She has seen wolves and caribou migrate south because of unrelenting Boreal fires, ash falling like rain and lightening start a single tree top

Plum. Bridget Fairbank. Porcelaneous Tile.

flame extinguished by rain five minutes later. More than 1,500 days perched above the trees, metronomes of time swaying gently in the wind, has pressed upon Fairbank the real and quantifiable importance of the individual. Please consider the ceramic material’s connection to land and commemoration when viewing this work. Clay is the most long-lasting archival material we use. Will the plants represented here take over or will these small layered, abstracted personal expressions be the souvenir of a perished plant? Fairbank proposes a compromise: coexistence by attentive interaction. Rather than translating the specific these tiles are meant to be plant-like, expressive, personal and joyful, a reminder that we are not apart from, but a part of nature. A reminder that growth is possible.

Bridget Fairbank (Fire Towers in Northern Alberta & Nelson, BC) is a relentless maker. Her ceramics connects utilitarian pottery, installation, performance and painting: asking a viewer to engage bodily in an idea. Her art pieces work to implicate and empower a viewer through sensory enjoyment often including taste, touch and smell. These qualities are exemplified in her recent MFA exhibition Foodscapes: From Seed to Mouth, at the University of Florida. A Canadian born in the mountains of beautiful British Columbia, her childhood was spent exploring nature and making her own fun. Perhaps this is why her work is often project based. Since childhood, she has traveled the world making art and seeking education. These experiences led her to value traditional hand crafts and also embrace technology in the globalized world. She believes strongly in community, living cultural knowledge and the power of the mundane to shape life. A



Photo of authos’s bookshelf

Not Exactly a Desert Island: Variations on a Theme The premise behind BBC Radio 4’s “Desert Island Discs” is simple and effective. Every week, for over seventy years, a prominent individual has been invited by the host to select the eight recordings that they would choose to take with them if cast away on a desert island. I began by asking myself which readings I would recommend to a novice interested in the history of writing about craft in Canada but in doing so I came to the realization that I wanted to reveal that while writing on Canadian craft history is a new discipline, there has always been writing about craft and it has always celebrated complexity. I also must consider what would this list say about the contemporary craft discourse? What would it say about the changing attitudes towards craft in Canada? If history is the recording of facts – then the role of historiography is to unearth the resources – to identify the clues. And as critical readers it is up to us to distinguish the conversational gambits, unravel the threads of conversation, and decide where to add our voices in this discourse. No one has yet published a history of Canadian craft and most historians are still locating and documenting primary and secondary sources. While it is the last two decades of academic writing that reveals the machinations of the contemporary craft discourse in Canada, it would be foolhardy to ignore the past or dismiss what has been said beyond our borders. The positioning of craft as a theorized object – the subject and product of discourse – can be traced to the 19th Century and the legacy of William Morris and the Arts and Crafts Movement. Given that it is this tradition that underpins Canadian scholarship, I will begin my desert island reading list with a British anthology.

Originally published in Studio Magazine, the Alberta Craft Council presents Dr. Jennifer E. Salahub’s craft reading recommendations. As part of our special programing for Craft Year 2020 and Alberta Craft Council’s 40th anniversary, you can look forward to further reading recommendations in upcoming issues. We would love to hear from our readers with their own reading suggestions. We are seeking reads that feed your creativity, craft focused or maybe not. Suggestions can run the gamut from fun, quick reads to more scholarly tomes. Email your recommendations to

Craft Reader 1 The Glenn Adamson, Oxford, Berg, 2010 Between its covers we find an inclusive compilation of geographically and historically diverse readings, succinctly contextualized by the editor, craft and design historian and theorist, Glenn Adamson. If one likens the history of western craft to an ongoing conversation it is here that we discover the earliest gambits and are introduced to the major proponents who have moved the discussion forward – from the Industrial Revolution to the present day. Adamson’s goal is to gather the most representative examples of writing about craft in order to consider “the overall shape of the field as it stands now.”

The Canadian 2 “Crafts.” Encyclopedia 2nd ed. peter weinrich,edmonton, hurtig,1988 The Canadian Encyclopedia (1988) identifies several themes then underpinning the Canadian craft discourse. The author, Peter Weinrich, was a founding Director of the Canadian Crafts Council (est. 1974) and it is noteworthy that he begins the entry with what continues to be a familiar rant – one that decries craft’s chimeric status. He writes: “An accurate and useful definition of contemporary crafts is unattainable, partly because the concepts underlying crafts are changing.” Yet, even as Weinrich regrets the confusing designations – craft, decorative art, fine craft, applied art, handicrafts – his contribution is marked by an underlying belief in the necessity of craft in Canada. To that end he lists many of the provincial and federal associations that historically heralded craft education as a means of stimulating local economy. Weinrich’s “Suggested Reading” list is limited, but it serves as a reminder that interest in a subject is often triggered by a specific event. For instance, the flurry of craft publications of the 1960s and 1970s reflects the contemporary cultural agenda – one that saw fine craft at Expo ’67, the Montreal Olympics (1976), and the Calgary Olympics (1988) as a means of promoting Canadian national identity.



Canadian text Art and 3 architecture in Canada a

Bibliography and Guide to the Literature to 1981 mary williamson and loren lerner, toronto, U of t press, 1991

My third selection is an oft-overlooked Canadian research tool. These are the readings with which Peter Weinrich would have been familiar and it is in this annotated bibliography that one discovers generations of writers who once set the tenor of the Canadian craft conversation, and the unexpected areas in which they worked and published. This is an excellent introduction to craft’s ephemeral history as many of these books, journals, exhibition catalogues and essays (dating from early 19th C) remain unknown to the broader public for the simple reason that they were not “collected” by institutions and, since most are no longer published, they have all but disappeared from view. How many remember Canadian Collector, The Craftsman/ L’Artisan, Canadian Antiques and Art Review or even Canadian Geographical Journal as important sources of information about Canadian craft? Even a casual perusal will provide insights into how the appreciation, even definition, of craft in Canada has mutated. In the early 20th century, craft was valued as a means of identifying or building community while during the war years, craft was held to be absolutely necessary in the rehabilitation of wounded and injured servicemen and took on a moral imperative. Values that are being given a new voice by today’s craft activists. Nonetheless, if I were to focus only on the ephemera of Canadian craft I would likely wave my treasured copy of my fourth choice.



Crafts 4 Canadian In Industry montreal, british american oil, 1954 Here again is proof of contemporary beliefs – for it authoritatively states “tourist trade aids Canada’s crafts movement.” This mid-century booklet was distributed by British America Oil “largely to encourage travel in Canada” and is illustrated with numerous, if somewhat unsettling, examples of modern Canadian craft.

Art 5 Canadian Dec /Jan (1949-1950) The fifth selection is also meant to serve as a cautionary tale, a reminder to look beyond the obvious. While the Arts/Crafts debate may appear as an interminable, even bombastic voice, it has not always been the defining voice in the craft conversation. As this issue of Canada’s preeminent art journal reveals, there was not one, but three craft related articles in this issue: “Introducing Manufacturers to Designers;” “Who Designs Canadian Textiles?” and “Fine Craftsmanship and Mass Production.” While there is a sense of unease regarding the popular perception of “handicrafts,” there is also a well-articulated desire to direct the conversation. “Canadian handicrafts remain in the hands of the amateurs, the housewives who have a knack for them, or that growing number of citizens who take up handwork as a hobby ... But all too seldom does anyone bother to make a plea that handicrafts be given the status of fine crafts and design.” Craft had a role to play, but what form would this take? In 1966 Moncrieff Williamson, curator of Expo ’67 Craft proclaimed that “across Canada, the star for craft is in the ascendant” yet it would be decades before we would see committed academic interest in craft history in Canada. Arguably the tipping point in the scholarship came in 1993 when the Canadian Museum of Civilization hosted a multidisciplinary symposium Making and Metaphor: A Discussion of Meaning in Contemporary Craft. This conference set several precedents: it recognized the importance of documentation and dissemination; attendees were drawn from a broad variety of disciplines and included scholars and makers; and its focus was contemporary craft. In the introduction to the publication, we encounter what is now a regrettably familiar lament about a lack of public understanding: “During the past 30 years, Canadian craft has grown dramatically. However, public perception and mainstream academic study of craft has yet to catch up.” But, catch up it did.

Exploring Contemporary 6 Craft: History, Theory & Critical Writing JEAN JOHNSON, TORONTO, 2002 My sixth suggestion is a selection of papers presented at the first international craft symposium hosted by Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre in 2002. In hindsight, the goal of the organizers was mammoth – to initiate an academic discussion that would lead to an understanding of the overall direction of the contemporary craft movement in Canada. Contributors from across North America were invited to address specific issues that would drive the discourse. American metal smith and critic, Bruce Metcalfe was given the task of examining contemporary craft through the lens of history while Canadian scholars brought the topic home. This was indeed an auspicious start to the new millennium, heralding the direction that the craft conversation would take and it appeared that Canadian universities, museums, makers, collectors, and critics were all on board! In fact, the first hire of craft historians at Canadian post-secondary institutions would be announced.


The Allied Arts: Architecture and Craft in Postwar Canada. Montreal: McGill Queens Press, 2012; NeoCraft: Modernity and Crafts. Halifax: NSCAD, 2007;

Ceramics.” 8 “Relational amy gogarty, Cahiers métiers d’art/ Craft Journal, 1/2 (2008) My final selection is an article and journal that are indicative of the quality of craft publications that have positioned us within the international craft community. For it is here that we meet established and emerging scholars, many of whom are makers. Amy Gogarty is a former AUArts instructor, the co-editor of Craft Perception and Practice: a Canadian Discourse (3 Vol) and potter. Hers is a thoughtful response to “relational aesthetics,” a concept posited in 1998 by French curator Nicolas Bourriaud. Here Gogarty suggests that: “While buzzwords often provoke irrational responses from those outside the magic circle of their influence, aspects of practices and approaches to making and writing about art gathered loosely under the rubric “relational aesthetics” might be productively considered in light of functional ceramics.” As in the first selection, the Craft Reader, we are reminded that our Canadian voice has an international audience. I began by asking myself which readings I would recommend to a novice interested in the history of craft in Canada but in doing so I came to the realization that I wanted to reveal that while writing about Canadian craft history is a new discipline there has always been writing about craft and it has always celebrated complexity. If history is the recording of facts – then the role of historiography is to unearth the resources – to identify the clues. And as critical readers it is up to us to distinguish the conversational gambits, unravel the threads of conversation, and decide where to add our voices in this discourse. A

Crafting Identity: The Development of Professional Fine Craft in Canada. Montreal: McGill Queens University Press, 2005 There are only a few monographs that address specific topics in the history of Canadian craft, and among these the contributions of the late Sandra Alfoldy stand out. She was a beloved educator, a prolific scholar, a passionate craft advocate, and a generous colleague. Having spent an inordinate amount of time in the archives of public and private institutions, her writings are rich in footnotes that offer innumerable jumping off points. I am offering you a choice – all are academic presses and the titles self-explanatory.

About the author: Dr. Jennifer E. Salahub is Professor Emerita of Art and Craft Histories at Alberta University of the Arts. Her interest in decoration and ornament is long standing and is reflected in her academic and personal life. Her BFA and MA in Canadian Art History were awarded by Concordia University, Montreal and she received a Ph.D. in the History of Design from the Royal College of Art, London. She is active in a number of professional societies, is on the Board of the Alberta Craft Council, and lectures and publishes internationally. Jennifer was the recipient of the Tom McFall Honour Award (2018).



MEET THE MAKER Albertine Crow Shoe and Erik Lee are both accomplished contemporary indigenous jewellery artists. Albertine Crow Shoe (Piikani Nation) considers her art to be a bridge that connects traditional Blackfoot culture to today’s modern non-Native world. Blackfoot culture is a rich and spiritual world that she interprets through the art of jewellery making. Residing in Maskwacis, Erik Lee specializes in engraved silver, bezel set buffalo horn, moose antler and semi precious stones. Erik’s designs incorporate indigenous Plains Cree motifs in a unique contemporary style.

Interviewed by Corinne Cowell, Alberta Craft Council: How long have you been a fine craft artist and how did you get started?

Albertine Crow Shoe: I’ve been a fine craft artist for over 25 years. In 2007 I took my first class in jewellery and metals. I had a passion for making but I didn’t know anything about becoming a jeweller so I began with non-credit classes at AUArts. I also took other classes/training in Emporia, KA, Taos, NM, Scottsdale, AZ and Gallup, NM where I met many great teachers. I also wanted to be self-sufficient and generate my own income. In 2016, I began working as a full-time silversmith. I’m from the Piikani Nation in southern Alberta. We are known for our beautiful beadwork, quill work, work with raw hide, and the list goes on. These art forms created by Niitsitapi (Blackfoot term meaning “Real People”) are exquisite. Today, I am a part of an evolving culture of Indigenous silversmiths in Alberta. Like anything else learning takes time, it’s discovery and exploration, and hands on experience. Erik Lee: I started making silver jewellery about ten years ago. Prior to that I sculpted stone, antler, wood and worked in many other Cree art forms such as hide tanning, tool making and beadwork. I’m also trained as a graphic designer, all these skills helped. The jewellery started when I lived on Vancouver Island. I was carving wood with Coastal First Nation artists, one of the artists, named Jackson Robertson from Kingcome Inlet, was


to grow as a jeweller/artist. But not everyone else was supportive, mainly because they didn’t understand what I did as a silversmith. EL: My spouse and family have been great sources of encouragement and certain master jewellers from other tribes have been very helpful, providing technical teachings and advice along the way.

hand engraving silver. I thought it was amazing so I asked him to teach me. He said, “I can’t really teach you but sit and watch me for a while and then you give it try.” CC: What was your first big career moment? AC: In 2013, I did my first show at AUArts, Tradition and Beauty, organized by Charles Lewton-Brain from the Jewellery + Metals department. It was there that the Glenbow Museum bought one of my pieces for their permanent collection. That raised my confidence and was my first of many big moments. EL: Some of the recent moments have been exhibiting at the Santa Fe Indian Market which is the largest and most prestigious juried Indigenous art event in North America and the Smithsonian Institutes’ National Museum of the American Indian in Washington DC. Those were big for me. CC: Who are your main supporters? AC: I have to acknowledge my late husband Paul Raczka, for seeing my creative ability and encouraging me to pursue it. He introduced me to the art world and taught me firsthand about business. Without him, I wouldn’t be a jeweller today. My family also supported my decision, but I don’t think they fully understood what I was doing until they started to see my work. They bought my pieces and encouraged me to continue. I’ve had many teachers and mentors along the way, they gave me the capacity


CC: What are some highlights from your career? Personally, professionally, creatively? AC: I am very proud to have my pieces in the Glenbow Museum and the Royal Alberta Museum collections. These are my early pieces and my work has evolved since then. While I was the Artist in Residence at the Glenbow Museum and I was able to help create an exhibition from their Blackfoot collection along with pieces that I fabricated. The Santa Fe Indian Market in Santa Fe, NM brings Native Art to the world by inspiring artistic excellence, fostering education, and creating meaningful partnerships. I am the first Blackfoot female from Alberta to be accepted

Erik Lee (opposite page), provided by the artist. Albertine Crow Shoe (below) by Elyse Bouvier.

into this juried show as a jeweller/artist. Silversmithing is fairly new amongst the First Nations people in Alberta and I am only one of a handful of professional jewellers. EL: Whenever I’m able to travel to exhibit or train is an adventure, I love seeing new places, experiencing other cultures and meeting new people. Creatively, there have been definite breakthroughs. Learning new and sometimes very technically complicated methods of fabrication or production has really unlocked design potential and creative avenues. It’s like levelling up. I’d have to say learning chasing and repoussé and how to do large overlay silver pieces are highlights. CC: Did you ever have any misgivings? Think about quitting?

keeps me at it. CC: Thoughts/experiences to share with other craft artists? AC: If you find your true passion and know this is what you want to do, just do it. Trust your abilities and work hard. Know that there will be good shows and bad shows.

no step by step you can follow. I think the hardest part is really the admin side of it, doing applications, proposals, and budgets, and explaining yourself over and over to people on paper. That’s not my favorite thing. You don’t think of a career in the arts as heavy in paperwork, but it actually is. The design and creating is the fun part. CC: Would you do it all again?

EL: Do what you feel creatively. Follow your heart and instincts in your work. Be disciplined (that’s a real challenge) especially when it seems like you are not really getting ahead. Learn from others, ask a million questions, study your craft. Try to hang around with artists you admire and pick their brains, do apprenticeships if you can. Even try and study under masters in other parts of the world. There’s so much to learn. Never stop learning and always push yourself to evolve the work.

AC: I believe in living your life with no regrets. Life is short and it can all change on a dime. I took my first class in jewellery and metals when I was in my late 40s. I knew my decision to become a full-time jeweller/artist would mean leaving my job and a guaranteed income but it has been worth it. I have been very fortunate to meet some very talented jewellers who have become close friends and family. I have been humbled by my experiences.

AC: A couple of years ago I was at a crossroads between going back to my previous work or to continue as a jeweller. I received a timely call from the Glenbow offering me the Artist in Residence position. That was my saving grace. There are times when I feel like quitting but I remember everything I’ve given up and the sacrifices I’ve made to get to where I am today. EL: If you aren’t a little bit scared all the time then you aren’t taking the right risks. I think every artist goes through periods of self doubt followed by extreme confidence, or maybe that’s just me? Maybe an artist doubts themselves when they feel like they aren’t being recognized by the right institutions or not getting a nod from someone you respect. I guess that’s the time to just lean on the confidence lever and believe in your own ability and vision. There have been periods of interrupted work, especially when relocating and having to set up a new studio or at a dry time when it seems like the money’s stretched too thin. In the past I’ve had to rely on my graphic design business and take other jobs to support my passion. Making jewellery and having the ability to create work I believe in is what makes me the happiest and most fulfilled; that’s what

CC: What is the hardest part of making a career in craft? AC: It’s persevering through the hard times. You need to pick yourself up and believe in yourself and your work. You will get rejected but that will make you want to work harder. You must challenge yourself and work hard to see the end results. EL: That there is no handbook. There’s

Someone asked me once, if I should have started this when I was younger. I disagreed, I bring with me my life experiences – it wouldn’t be the same if I started earlier in my life as a jeweller because I wouldn’t have the knowledge I have today, that is expressed through my work. EL: Absolutely .A




10186 - 106 Street NW Edmonton, AB

1721 - 29 Avenue SW, Suite 280 Calgary, AB

Feature Gallery

Cultivate | Instigate An exhibition about the influential creatives at the forefront of post-secondary craft education in Alberta January 18 - March 21, 2020 Artist Talk & Reception: Saturday, February 15 from 2 - 4pm

Making: a career in craft (Page 8 & 9) In craft, careers are as varied as the objects created, and each artist has their own unique career story to tell. February 1 - April 25, 2020 Artist Reception: Saturday, February 8 from 2 - 4pm Discovery Gallery The Spaces Between (Page 10) Leah Kudel explores the absent spaces that surround us in life. This exhibition is an intersection between hand-blown glass, photography, video, and interactive art. January 18 - February 29, 2020 Artist Talk & Reception: Saturday, January 25 from 2 - 4pm Ceramica Botanica (Page 11) A fresh cause for optimism by ceramic artist Bridget Fairbank. Will the plants in this exhibition take over or will these small layered, abstracted personal expressions be the souvenir of a perished plant? March 7 - April 18, 2020 Artist Talk & Reception: Saturday, March 7 from 2 - 4pm

The Spaces Between Leah Kudel explores the absent spaces that surround us in life. This exhibition is an intersection between hand-blown glass, photography, video, and interactive art. Holding Rocks Cage Series Master goldsmith Charles Lewton-Brain elevates and magnifies the simple river pebble. This exhibition speaks to human attempts to control and possess nature. March 28 - May 30, 2020 Artist Talk & Reception for both exhibitions: Saturday, April 4 from 2 - 4pm

Second Thursdays | Spotlight Join us at cSPACE on the 2nd Thursday of each month from 5 - 8pm for a series of special events. Meet featured artists and visit other open studios. February and March Spotlights feature teachers at the Wildflower Arts Centre. February 13: March 12: April 9:



Gillian Mitchell & Sally Dobbin Lisa McGrath & Ryder Richards Julya Hajnoczky



EXHIBITION OPPORTUNITIES Craft Excellence UPCOMING EXHIBITIONS & Apply by: March 1, 2020 CALLS Exhibition Dates: Alberta Craft Gallery - Edmonton: May 16 - August 22, 2020, Alberta Craft Gallery - Calgary: September 5 - November 4, 2020 Alberta is a province rich with creative talent, so what better way to mark our 40th anniversary than an exhibition celebrating Alberta’s best contemporary fine craft? We invite members working in all craft media to apply. Craft Excellence will feature a diverse, juried selection of exceptional fine craft artists making in our province today.

Michelle Hardy, Curator at Nickle Galleries leading a textiles tour for Alberta Culture Days 2019

After the success of last year’s Culture Days Craft Tour programming, we are delighted to announce that even more Craft Tours will be coming in 2020. As part of our comprehensive coverage of navigating a career in craft in all its myriad aspects for our 40th anniversary, the Alberta Craft Council is rolling out an exciting series of outreach programming for our members and supporters. You can look forward to behind the scenes collections tours, learning how to access invaluable resources, and professional development opportunities. Stay tuned to our member e-news and website to find out more!

20/20 Craft Perspectives Apply by: May 1, 2020 Exhibition Dates: Alberta Craft Gallery - Edmonton: September 5 - December 24, 2020 Alberta Craft Gallery - Calgary: 2021 The Alberta Craft Council is celebrating our 40th anniversary by looking ahead and looking back. We are organizing behind the scenes field trips to some of Alberta’s most fascinating collections and archives. Members are invited to create work in response to their visits to museum and archive collections in Alberta. The work you create can take inspiration from an entire historic collection or from one particular object.

For complete call for entry details, visit:



AROUND ALBERTA Noteworthy craft exhibitions, events, and more The Alberta Craft Council is deep into the planning stages for our 2020 Craft Tours to some of Alberta’s most fascinating collections and archives. In the meantime, here’s a listing of recommendations to help spark your travel bug:

Daphne Odjig. Little Mothers.

Museum of Aboriginal Peoples’ Art & Artifacts

Portage College - Lac La Biche

“Rocky Mountains, Alberta” (1932). Photo Number: A3086 Notes: View of the Watchtower Ski Camp with Headwell in mid-winter.

Provincial Archives of Alberta Edmonton

Housed at the Portage College Corporate Centre, the Aboriginal Artifacts collection contains nearly 2000 Indigenous artworks and artifacts. Beginning in 1978, acquired pieces were catalogued as an artifact collection to be used for teaching.

The Provincial Archives of Alberta acquires, preserves and publicly makes available records from government, individual people and organizations for researchers of all ages. The Provincial Archives of Alberta and its holdings provide a great source of information and inspiration. Primary sources Visitors to the museum will be able to enjoy are the best and most immersive way for a self-guided tour of Aboriginal art and people to explore the past and discover culture. Guided group tours can also be what life in Alberta was like for over 100 accommodated with prior arrangements. years. Discover a piece of Alberta’s past, The exhibits provide an in-depth look at find a lost relative or donate your own North American Aboriginal Art from First records and leave your mark on Alberta’s Nations, Métis and Inuit cultures and houses history. The doors are open for you to see the only permanent collection in the world Alberta in a different way. The Provincial of the Professional Native Indian Artists Archives of Alberta Shop also stocks Inc. (Daphne Odjig, Alex Janvier, Joseph archival preservation materials to protect Sanchez, Norval Morrisseau, Eddy Cobiness, your most valuable items in addition to Carl Ray and Jackson Beardy). offering conservation and audiovisual services.



Game Night. Exhibition at Curbside Museum in Canmore, AB

Curbside Museum Canmore

Exhibitions at this micro museum explore ideas both large and small, on subjects factual or fictional, and range from the whimsical to the serious, with no limits except what fits within the museum itself. Founded and curated by Enza Apa, the Curbside Museum is an ongoing project with new exhibits every 7-8 weeks. The Curbside Museum is open every day, all day. It is located on Railway Avenue at Pinewood Crescent, in Canmore, Alberta. From January 22 – March 29, 2020, Curbside Museum travels to the Art Gallery of Grande Prairie.

Photo courtesy of Medalta

Haley Bates. Scooper

Kasie Campbell and Ginette Lund. Watching my mom lose her beautiful knitting talent to Alzheimer’s


Illingworth Kerr Gallery

Real Women

Medalta is an innovative industrial museum, contemporary ceramic arts facility, art gallery, and community hub. This once static museum has been transformed into a dynamic space that activates community and inspires change. The Friends of Medalta Society has been accepting donations to their Permanent and Study collections since 1992. Thanks to the generosity of donors from across Canada, the collection has grown to over 38,000 objects. The primary focus of the collection is artifacts related to the factories located in the Historic Clay District with a minor focus on the other Potteries that operated in Southeastern Alberta.

Reliant Objects is a group exhibition of interdisciplinary craft work challenging notions of form, function, and the future of domestic objects. The works in this exhibition rely upon a viewer’s recognition of their sameness and difference, in the ability to seek meaning in material and formal digressions from everyday familiarity. In their multiplicity, augmentation, or fragmentation, these works act as a mirror, allowing the viewer to recognize themselves in disparate and unfamiliar parts and pieces.

The Alberta Foundation for the Arts Travelling Exhibition Program (TREX), organized by the Art Gallery of Alberta (TREX Region 2), is pleased to feature the exhibition Real Women. Featuring art/craft works by five contemporary women artists from Edmonton and Calgary (Marlena Wyman, Kasie Campbell and Ginette Lund, Allison Tunis, Lisa Brawn), this exhibition creates space for women’s experiences and stories to be told and recognizes the contributions women make to our communities. Inspired by cultural shifts in these first decades of the twenty-first century such as international Women’s Marches and the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, the art works in this exhibition question societal perceptions of women, art making itself, and express how the featured artists define what it means to be a woman and how they personally wish to be seen.

Medicine Hat

Additionally, Medalta has a collection of historic plaster moulds that were used at the Hycroft China site between 19381989, and collections of silkscreens, rubber stamps, stencils, tools and other artifacts found on site. They also continue to collect stories of life working in the factories. With a well-regarded Artist in Residence program, Medalta attracts makers from all over the world making it an international destination of choice for ceramicists and appreciators.

AUArts - Calgary

Haley Bates, Zimbra Beiner, Maisie Broadhead, Jeffrey Clancy, Venetia Dale, Del Harrow, Dave Kennedy, Gwenessa Lam, Joanna Manousis, Shelly McMahon, Myra Mimlitsch-Gray, Jeremy Nuttall, Masako Onodera, Joanna Powell, Tom Shields, Adam Shirley, Adam Shiverdecker, Jess Tolbert On until March 7, 2020

On display throughout Alberta

Visit online:

Too cold to leave the house? Access their online collection from the comfort of your home:



The Works Art & Design Festival Join us on Churchill Square June 19 to July 1, 2020

I’d rather be doing this, Juliana Rempel, 2016





A year-long festival of contemporary fine craft, Craft Year promotes events from all over the country. It is a platform to highlight Canadian craft activity at the local, regional, national and international levels. Craft Year 2020 is a special project led by the Canadian Crafts Federation in partnership with all of the Provincial and Territorial Crafts Councils and CCF Affiliate Members across the nation.



Be the voice of contemporary craft. Ceramics. Fibre. Glass. Jewellery and Metals. (L) Sheila Mahut, Fragments, Green, detail, glass and ceramics, 2019; (R) Rob Froese Measured Composition, detail, 2018.


Turn your thinking on its

AUArt’s MFA in Craft Media offers the opportunity to experiment and explore materials, processes, technologies, critical discourse and theory through creative inquiry that will expand and challenge perceptions of contemporary craft.



The Story Behind the Object... The meaning imbued in fine craft objects is ingrained in the materials, skills, and inspiration of the makers. Once objects leave the hands of their maker, they have the capacity of taking on unpredicted significance for others. New histories are created as they are chosen, cherished, and exist as future heirlooms. Read on page 7 how Dave Dunkley’s bowl came to symbolize hope and transformation for one family.

Wooden Bowl by Dave Dunkley. Photo supplied by Evetty Photography Return Address: Alberta Craft Council 10186-106 Street Edmonton, AB T5J 1H4