Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Artist’s Studio

With its South facing windows frame
the most rugged Mountain View, 
a peaceful place fragrant with chaparral,
The sun awakens the studio with the first lit flame 
of early morn sending rays of brilliance
spreading across the floor; 
looking much like the fingers from the hand 
of the artist carrying light into the room.
Places where the light has not penetrated
cast deep shadows that ‘mold their forms like the potter’s’ hand. 
Brightened with pure light the water and the clay –
there is a sense of spiritual energy emanating 
from the lustrous pottery repose 
on pedestals and shelves that line the ‘little artist’ studio.
Cascading fires of soul come to life 
with shades of gold and ruby reds, 
dancing in the light wearing 
colors of a gorgeous patina – 
once rough clay now perfected 
 by a mantle of molten golden orbs.   
The smell of wet clay and clean water
tingle’s her nostrils - 
following the movement of the sun 
from dawn to dusk, 
she works with only an artist vision 
shaping that perfect vessel
that will hold that elusive beauty 
and the magic of transmutation of
earth, air, fire and water. 
  A small lovely lady her appearances’ elegant and refined,
draped in an embroidered Indian sari, 
her long silver hair swept into a knot at the nape of her neck, 
she was from a wealthy family,
but her fortune had withered away
  after a long and fascinating life, 
comes into her own as an artist in her eight decade.
She reaches for a colorful lustrous tea cup,
the one that started this all, she muses,
“this is how I do pottery against all the rules”, 
her melodic laugh fills the room, through mastery of technique,
hers were loose and unconventional
"freely exploring form, glaze combinations and happenstance -
exhibiting an embrace of artistic naiveté 
and the unexpected results of the kiln."
Her clay is filled with magic, 
the world comes pouring in her hand 
as the wheel is being spun in a centrifugal force 
and the work of the potter’s spirit is imbued in each piece 
bringing to life the invisible trapped in the clay
made visible to a moving piece.
Beatrice Wood with a 'Dadaist sense of humor '
and a' romantic view of life,'
had an intuitive use of color and form that served her well, 
as she continued working in her studio to the age of 104.

"Beatrice Wood passed away in 1998
at the age of 105 years of age, 
with the last 25 years of her life the most productive, 
creating work to satisfy a growing market for her ceramics,
writing books and visiting with 
the hundreds of people who showed up on her doorstep. 
When asked the secret of her longevity, 
she would simply offer “art books, chocolates and young men”.
Beatrice Wood (March 3, 1893 – March 12, 1998)
was an American artist and studio potter.

photo credits ! & 2 rodney smith, 3 & 4 * 8 google image, the rest of Beatrice Woods Center for the Arts.


  1. This is really an interesting story. I like the sequence of the pictures you have used

  2. Astounding tribute and lovely words and pictures... you are lovely Joanny dear!

  3. Joanny,
    I really like the pictures here, and the way you present this old lady. She seemed to be an amzing lady.
    The first picture looks like a place where i would like to sit down and just have a peaceful moment.
    You capture beauty in so many lovely ways.

    Warm hug:)


  4. I read of her passing away in yesterday's paper but I have never heard of her before. Goodness dear, you have given us a detailed and impressive account of her life. her life seems to be characterised by colour, finery and love. The pictures illustrate the kind of life she would have lived: Grand and fulfilling. Not many choose to live life that way. Whenever I see people like that, I am fuelled by a maddening desire to be alive to each moment and give my best to everything I do. But like everything, even that is a process and I am on my way.

    Joanny, I amaze at your remarkable abilities to convey facts and insights.

    Thanks for this lovely post :)

    Joy always,

  5. Wonderful words and superb photo's thanks for sharing,

    Take care.

  6. I like here...I love your stories!
    I wish you a great week!
    Best regards from Romania!

  7. The smell of wet clay and clean water
    tingle’s her nostrils -
    following the movement of the sun
    from dawn to dusk,
    she works with only an artist vision
    shaping that perfect vessel
    that will hold that elusive beauty
    and the magic of transmutation of
    earth, air, fire and water----------

    your these words really explain the life of the honerable artist.Her creations,her vision of life,her thoughts---every thing is clear in your this post.I really liked your way of presenting any story or any idea.
    Best wishes.

  8. What a fabulous story. Thanks for the intro to Beatrice Wood. Will have to research. The photos are all lovely, but the fourth is most interesting. So dynamic. This is a gift. Thank you.

  9. Beautiful words, full of imagery and creative expression. Sending you love xxx

  10. Thanks for sharing Ms. Wood's story Joanny in your own creative and interesting way.

  11. Day Joanny

    What series is excellent and the weather became, the recordings are all very nicely lit and very worthwhile.

    Every time I'm happy if I could admire your beautiful photography.

    Kind regards from Holland,

    Joop kisses

  12. your beautiful words weave a wonderful tribute joanny...

  13. Oh, Joanny -- this is just beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! Photos, words, soul shining.

    105 and her most creative near the end. Let's be her!! Reminds me of Georgia O Keefe!


    Now, I am off to create and post a sidebaar button for YOU!!


    (P.S. later today I'll be posting me on video singing part of a new song I've written, whoo-hoo!!)

  14. Second time I clicked before the code, lost
    message, Darn.
    Anyway, you wrote that so beautifully, that I love her now. What an attractive woman and
    to live to 105 is amazing. God must have loved her too. What stories she must have had.


  15. I like the narrative voice you used in this poem...what an effort you had put to come up with this.

    Thanks for the info of this beautiful woman...You just taught me something.


  16. what a beautiful tribute joanny..i love to watch potters do their work..and you are a word potter

  17. Wonderful post --what a terrific lady!

  18. No way! My son just yesterday asked me if he could live to be 109 (not sure why that number...maybe b/c he's 9 and just thinking a century ahead??) I told him most likely NO. Maybe I should rethink and re answer!!

    I love the part about the artist's hand carrying the light into the room. I can almost hear the beautiful whoosh of a sound that would make :)

    Hope you are doing well my dear!



  19. Beautiful post, it's like stepping back in time.

    Have a wonderful weekend, sweetie :)