I just put these up for sale on my etsy site for those of you who want some wood fired work. http://www.etsy.com/shop/bloomer4

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Here are  a few of the pieces from my recent soda firing here at Cobb Mountain Art & Ecology Project. I had some pretty successful pieces come out of this and will be sending a few off to a vase show at Red Lodge Clay Center and posting some on my Etsy Shop as I get images edited.

A associate of mine recently shared this with me and I am posting this because Vivian Westwood has been such a inspiration to me over the years. Her involvement in fashion design, music, and protest culture has been amazing over the years. I found her work through my involvement with punk culture while growing up. She has important thoughts on culture, DIY attitude, blatant consumerism and consciousness in decision making with your life.  Anyway, enjoy.

HP

I will be posting new work in my etsy shop all weekend. Please go check it out.

HP Bloomer Etsy Shop <-click here

I am always looking for ways to stay engaged and active in my work. Sometimes this means restricting my palette, other times it means altering my narrative or adapting new motifs. Recently, spurred on by curiosity about making a more easily marketable and producible line of my work, I began looking into Mid Century Modern Ceramics and Bauhaus Ceramics. I was not surprised to find a wide variety of ceramicists and important makers. I was however surprised to find a name that I had seen in work that was still in production. Edith Heath who founded Heath Ceramics here in California in 1948 with her husband Brian. Some of you may be more familiar with her work and accomplishments than I was but those of you who aren’t really should be.

Edith Heath was born in Iowa in 1911 and was a child of the depression which strengthened her resourcefulness. After taking a art education course in the 1930’s she redesigned a treadle powered sewing machine into a potters wheel and started making work with her husband in California. In 1943, ever the student and always curious, she partitioned the University of California Berkeley’s extension program to host a yearlong course in clay and glaze chemistry where she learned to engineer her own clay bodies and glazes. She focused her work on developing simplistic forms and glazes which were instep with popular aesthetic of the modernist architecture which was in full bloom at the time. She would become known for her use of local California clays in the production of her wares. These clays were rich in unrefined ores which created dark speckles that shone through her unique glazes.

In the late 1940’s she was active in the ceramics community, exhibiting at the Syracuse Ceramic Nationals (from 1946-1950) and working in her own studio. She was fortunate enough to be asked by Gumps (which is a luxury home furnishing and decor retailer founded in 1861 in San Francisco) to supply a line of her work for their stores. While she took on a few assistants she continued to actively participate in the production of her line and by 1949 Heath Ceramics was producing 10,000 pieces a year. Before his death in 1959 Frank Lloyd Wright had even been taken with her wares and commissioned several sets for specific projects of his.

Amazingly her “Coupe” line of ware has been in production since 1948 and has built a tremendous base of followers and collectors. Also important to her success was the development of a line of tiles for architectural and commercial use. In this line she embraced variety and eschewed uniformity by hand making the entire line. This line of tiles won her the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal. She was the first non-architect to win this distinction. Architects such as Eero Saarinen, Alexander Girard, William Pereira and others specifically designated the use of her tiles for a number of projects. In her life time she exhibited and won awards from the de Young Museum, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and others.

Edith Heath died in 2006 at the age of 94 only selling her ceramic business in 2003 to Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey who are currently running and operating under the original name of Heath Ceramics and are continuing to win numerous awards while moving the pottery forward.

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Sources:

http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Edith-Heath-renowned-ceramicist-2507635.php

 

Bray, Hazel V. (1980). The Potter’s Art in California 1885-1955. Oakland, CA: The Oakland Museum Art Department. p. 62. ISBN 0-295-96200-3.

 

Klausner, Amos (2006). Heath Ceramics, The Complexity of Simplicity. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, LLC. p. 20. ISBN 0-8118-5560-0.

 

http://ecosalon.com/heath-ceramics/

 

http://pmcaonline.org/exhibitions/edith-heath-tabletop-modernist/

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Beholding Beauty Art Center hosts reception for multiple art installations in May

by: Matthew Caine

There are three amazing artists, each a virtuoso of their chosen forms, exhibiting for the month of May at the Willits Center for the Arts. The latest shows, which both had an opening reception on Saturday night, are an eclectic blend of creativity and expression. Upstairs are the paintings and texture studies of Holly Cratty, a fine artist and poet who unfortunately passed away in 2012. In the main gallery downstairs is the show collectively known as “Vessels,” which is a juxtaposition of HP Bloomer’s ceramic vessels and Craig Gardner’s photographs of the “vessels” that are pregnant and nursing mothers. Holly Cratty, who was known locally through her work at the Blue Sky Gallery, was a renaissance artist who practiced various forms of paintings, from stunning sunsets and seascapes, to deep texture studies. According to her husband, Scott Cratty, she would obsess on one form of painting until she exhausted her energy and interest in that form. Then she would find another discipline and work on that form until she would find another technique that would interest her. Her dedication is evident in the work that is being shown in the upstairs gallery. She also wrote books of poetry, one of which is available at the gallery. Gallery manager Holly Madrigal reached out to Scott Cratty to fill the space, which was a challenge, as Holly Cratty’s work is being shown in seven galleries concurrently and there was – at a first look – little left to show other than some “juvenilia and intense geometric abstract stuff” which may not have been apt for the space. Luckily, Scott Cratty was able to find some excellent examples of his wife’s work, which will be exhibited for two months in her show titled, “One of a Kind.” The Crattys are known in the area for opening the Westside Renaissance Market in Ukiah at 1003 West Clay Street. The market is the “last neighborhood market in Ukiah,” specializing in local foods and a vast variety of beer. HP Bloomer IV’s work, in the lower gallery, is a blending of various forms of ceramics, which are decorated with iconic and primitive-seeming designs. “[The] patterns originate from an interest in interior design, fashion design, architecture and painting,” reveals Bloomer. “The patterns, through repetition, become narrative for me. I use them in the context of personal language as it relates to people close to me, experience, or geography. I use them to tell my story.” Bloomer comes from a creative ceramic family in Texas. He was exposed to the art form at an early age by his mother who has a master’s in ceramics. He now lives in Cobb and teaches ceramics and sculpture as an adjunct professor at Mendocino College in Ukiah. He originally pursued a degree in painting and drawing, but ended up with a master’s in ceramics. Bloomer asked the gallery to place flowers in some of his pieces. He likes his work to have function as well as form. “There is something nice about ceramics that, when it’s approached correctly, is a bit subversive, in that most of the objects are generally very accessible to the viewer,” he shares. “Anyone can relate to a mug, or a cup, or a butter dish. Our society is so far away from handmade objects that in some regards, I consider it a rebellious act to make an art object that is a functional, everyday piece of art that the owner can interact with in very personal spaces in their lives. Bloomer concludes: “So I’m kind of putting that message into their hands and sending it out into the world. People then can be creative in the way they display the piece, where they place it, and how they use it.” Photographer Craig Gardner has been an integral member of the Willits Center for the Arts for several years, participating in the Willits Photo Club and their yearly shows. He came up with the concept for this show a few years ago when he observed controversy concerning mothers nursing in public – an act that he considers a beautiful rite between mother and child, and one that should not be stigmatized and vilified by the misperceptions of people who fail to see the beauty.

WillitsWeekly_05112017_APages

Here is a link to the original and full article:

http://www.willitsweekly.com/documents/WillitsWeekly_05112017_APages.pdf