Elizabeth Block Pottery

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I think I always wanted to learn to throw on the potter's wheel.  I didn't do it at New York City's High School of Music and Art, and I certainly didn't do it at Radcliffe College (it has a pottery studio now, but it didn't when I was there).  Finally, in 1974, I did it at the Potters Studio, which was then on Dupont Street in Toronto.  I was briefly a member of the pottery studio at Rochdale (anyone remember Rochdale? Toronto's hippie "alternative university" of the late 60's), where there were kick wheels with no catch basins (!), and your pots might be fired sometime or other or they might not; but I got a lot of practice on the wheel at the time I needed it.

Then I got my own wheel and kiln, and started to sell in art and craft shows - more shows, for more years, than I care to think about.  I have been selling wholesale for fifteen years.

I work almost exclusively on the wheel - I seem to like the formal discipline it imposes.  Most of my work is elegant, tasteful, sophisticated, designed never to go out of fashion - but occasionally I indulge my whimsy by making such things as coin banks in the shape of animals.  I get a kick out of figuring out how to make these creatures - a loon, for instance - on the wheel.

Just about all my work is functional, even the pieces that are primarily decorative.  I think there is a certain dignity in the kind of craftsmanship that produces things that are to be used.

I have won prizes for functional pottery at the Haliburton Highlands Guild of Fine Arts summer sale.

As a member of Potters for Peace, I have traveled in Nicaragua and met and worked with potters there.

I throw on the wheel in the attic and I glaze in the basement, and I enjoy listening to the traffic reports on the CBC while I work.