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June 1, 2010 > Who knew clay spoke?

Who knew clay spoke?

By Lucinda Bender

Clay has been a creative medium throughout history. From simple figures to complex sculptures, man has always expressed himself with clay. An upcoming exhibit at Olive Hyde Art Gallery, "The Language of Clay", features the 'creative language' of 39 members of the Orchard Valley Ceramic Arts Guild.

The Guild, founded in 2001 by a group of pottery friends, was formed with a mission to foster a creative, innovative, and supportive environment for students and educate the public in ceramic arts. From that humble beginning, the Guild has grown to over 150 members throughout the Bay Area. It not only sponsors ceramic workshops and exhibits but produces a prize winning newsletter, an active e-communication link and an excellent website,

Seventy-five ceramic artworks, selected by the noted professional, Will Johnson of the Black Bean Ceramic Center, reflect the diversity of the membership. A variety of styles and techniques express their creativity.

"African Drum Birds", a whimsical look at another culture, was made by Peggy Ann Johnston. Johnston teaches kids and adults how to have fun and express themselves with clay at her studio in Cupertino.

"After the Fire" by Linda Mau is part of her Memories Series. For Mau, a memory is never complete... there are holes in it. When remembering her Grandmother's teapot, it too has holes. The teapot was first completely fabricated out of steel wire. It was then covered with special clay containing paper fibers, then "given to the fire."

"Ancient Fish" is an intricate sculpture made by Russian born artist, Inna Razmakova. In it she combines fantasy, craftsman and a mastery of color.

Doris Fischer-Colbrie, a mathematician from Stanford, makes intricate vessels for flowers. Her "Basket Vase" demonstrates the precision of her training.

"Hanging Out" by Elena Peretz tells a story. The characters in her sculpture each have a life history. They sit on the bench waiting. Each is alone, each telling a story. Their faces and body language 'speak volumes'.

"Random Acts of Madness" by Cindy Couling, a graphic artist, is full of complexity. There is order in the madness... words, wires, shape... conscious design.

The Language of Clay
June 4 - July 1
Thursday - Sunday
12 - 5 p.m.

Opening Reception
Friday, June 4
7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Olive Hyde Art Gallery
123Washington Boulevard, Fremont
(510) 791-4357

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