Keira Peterson carries a quiet presence, and Grounded is a word that characterizes her well. She is purposeful, focused and determined. She is hard working, relentless in her creative journey, and celebrates every small victory.
“If I’m not actively working on a project, I’m usually thinking of what I’m going to do next, new ideas for projects. Life as a potter is definitely a balancing act. The medium is fairly time sensitive. It has added a lot of planning and structure to my life to make sure the clay is at just the right texture to work with throughout the different project stages.” Keira says.
Keira found her creative center with the medium, clay. She is at home in her personal studio at The Village and easily moves into a fluid rhythm while working. Whether she is at the wheel or exploring new glazes, Keira is thoughtful and focused.
When I asked her, why clay?, she said, “I love the freedom clay forces on me”. I have never heard that said before and I believe it captures the paradox of creativity. There are hard and fast boundaries that creatively we are compelled to push. Keira continued “I’m the type of person that would obsess over every little detail when I was painting or using other mediums. Nothing ever felt finished and I could work on pieces endlessly. Strangely, I am so relieved that I cannot do the same thing with clay. I can make it the best way I can, and something out of my control could still go awry in a firing. But that’s that. I can start over, but I cannot obsess over that exact piece anymore. It just is what it is.”
Keira has an ease about her in her process. She celebrates what comes whether it is amazing or disappointing; she embraces the journey of discovery.
“Try, try and try again. There’s a lot of ways to fail in pottery and it is an important part of the process. I learn so much every time I ‘fail’. So I come up with an idea, I attempt it, and usually I take a lot of risks. I recently, admittedly accidentally, ripped a giant hole out of the middle of a vase trying a new technique. My first thought was to destroy it and start over, but I decided to push the edges of the hole together and seal it up. At worst, I end up smashing it anyway, right? Well, turns out I love my funky happy little accident vase and now I’m pushing that to make others for a new series! I also mix my own glazes instead of using commercial glazes, which can lead to some great results or terrible results. A lot of testing happened for the glazes made for Grounded Flow, and although they are different from my original vision, I love them even more. So my process? Have a plan, but experiment often.” Keira says. Keira flows with the unpredictability of her medium and celebrates the outcomes.
Keira has a very full life. She was newly married this past year. She works weekly in sales in interiors. Balancing her family, her job and making pots has truly required a groundedness and a flow. She has made pots for ten years now. Currently in her second year of an apprenticeship at The Village Potters Clay Center, Keira has clear goals, a workable plan and she is finding her voice and building her business in the arts.
When asked what she liked about her apprenticeship, Keira said, “The community. It is incredible to be able to brainstorm ideas with like minded individuals, or troubleshoot issues when there is a problem with a piece. The support, in general, is so amazing. It really underlines how important community is to developing one’s work.”
She describes her work saying, “I make minimalistic forms with gorgeous glazes. I’m an earthy person and I’m always on the hunt for colors or textures that remind me of nature. My pieces for Grounded Flow give a mountain vs beach, land meets sea kind of vibe and I’m looking forward to exploring that more.”
Keira also contributes as much as she gleans in our community here at The Village Potters Clay Center. She is smart and detailed and she makes all of us better. She embraces success and learning and celebrates her forms in their simplicity and subtle nuance.
This exhibition is rightly titled for Keira Peterson, who is grounded in her creative pursuit with purpose and planning and flows in her daily creative journey.
Join us for a virtual opening with fellow exhibitor, Caroline Wollard ( to be featured in our November Newsletter) on Friday, October 15 at 5PM, via our Facebook or Instagram pages (@thevillagepotters).
Also, we invite you to visit our gallery and see and shop their exhibition. The show will run October 16 – November 28, and we are open daily from 10am-5pm.
Sarah Wells Rolland
The Village Potters Clay Center