Bonnie Blue creates beautiful bronzed sculptures in stone and clay. Many of her sculptures are cast by Mike Koscis of Bristol RI using a secret formula created by the late Len Shartle, whose monument to Christopher Columbus graces Independence Park.
The garden is an endless inspiration for my work as an artist. I have a huge garden that is grown for my PAPERMAKING STUDIO. The papers I make use all the different kinds of flowers and leaves to make a very artful and sophisticated product. Florabunda is what I call the look of my papers. there’s a complete bouquet in every sheet of stationary. perfect as a wedding invitation jacket.
The POTTERY STUDIO uses the inspiration in a more indirect way. Vines, leaves, flowers, and seeds are painted over a shino base glaze. The pottery is functional. I love all materials maybe I should call myself a mix-media artist.
My current body of work embraces the dreams and nightmares of old. Things that go bump, and bump hard in the night have been explored in a more playful manor. Daydreams from my childhood have been illustrated using imagery found in sailor’s tales of sea monsters and night terrors. My fondness of Japanese block prints, as well as short poems helps develop the stylized patterns, subject matter and execution of the work. Finally, I have chosen to fire this work (painstaking as it is to create) in a wood fueled kiln. This allows the elements to leave their mark on each piece. In some cases it will obscure part of the narrative, leaving you the viewer to add your imagination to fill the gap.
Having been born and raised in NYC, Manhattan was my playground – a plethora of vibrant cultures juxtaposed against all the good and bad in people working, walking and living in the city. My exposure to art was minimal at best, having attended Catholic School for 12 years. Vowing to pursue it later in life and with the need to support myself, I received an AAS Degree in Secretarial Science from the Borough of Manhattan Community College/City University of NY, providing me with the tools and skills needed to begin my adventures. Four of the 12 years of employment with an international organization were spent in Cyprus where I was introduced to clay. Upon return to NY, I worked out of the Greenwich House Pottery in the Village. An illness provided me with the opportunity to re-evaluate my life and make good on my vow. I enrolled in the NY State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, graduated with a BFA and was very fortunate to have studied under Val Cushing and Tony Hepburn. Unfortunately, my hands did not touch clay for a long time after graduation – until finally finding a studio that fit my needs and became a member of Mudstone Studios in Warren, RI.
About my work My work is primarily wheel thrown and hand altered. I approach my work as I do life – it’s an adventure – and usually have no idea what they will look like until they emerge from the glaze firing. My philosophy is reflected in the work: you have to keep moving – spiritually, physically, emotionally and intellectually. Remaining in one place too long can be death. I want my work to give people joy, happiness and/or a good laugh and pray to God to achieve that goal.
Current work My current efforts are focused in two directions. One is larger bowls and platters with movement in structure and glazing, Oftentimes appearing to vibrate an energy. The other direction is sculptural: thrown cylinders which are hand altered. I call them my stone figures. Some of them seem to be stuck and others seem to be struggling to move. Their stone skin protects them, but as they struggle to move it also entraps them. Their continual development is in the direction of setting them free.
My inspiration comes from my love of wildlife and nature. I use the ceramics medium to tell a story. As I mold the clay into the form I’m trying to achieve, a story evolves embellished with texture, color and detail. I hope to stir a feeling that these creatures could come to life and play with you.
Originally hailing from the Pacific Northwest and now residing in Tiverton, RI I tend to incorporate elements of the ocean and farmland into my pottery. I have developed many of my own unique glazes that reflect the colors and feelings that are evoked in me while being surrounded by the water and land.