A life immersed in amateur astronomy, ceramics, education and storytelling is the art that D.E.Walters creates. She has been a potter for 44 years. In addition to creating pottery, she teaches ceramics in the studio in her own backyard. She also hosts art-cations” in her Gallery Suite where one can buy local art off the walls. Diane is dedicated to making the magic of art and creation accessible to everyone while telling a compelling story of how potters mirror both earthly and Cosmic evolution.
According to Diane Walters, aka D.E. Walters, there are a lot of reasons why anyone becomes something. “My father and my mother were both, what we would call, makers; they were children of the depression. They upcycled and they recycled. They learned how to make do with what they had and usually could make something out of nothing and make it beautiful at the same time.”
On a lifelong practice of art, the owner of eARTh Studios reflects: “My father was a craftsman and an artist. His motto was, ‘if you are going to do something, do it well’. This motto has been a blessing and a curse for me because, typical of most artists, I experience so many failures.”
As an adult, Diane Walters apprenticed with MC Richards, an American poet, potter, and writer best known for her book Centering: in Pottery, Poetry and the Person. “While working with M.C., I embraced failure. What I finally learned is that it is failure that makes you the artist, not the successes.”
The mentor taught her to plug away in order to develop the skill most essential to artistry, perseverance. ‘’It’s the fact that you are not afraid to fail because you know you’ll just try again ‘because you’re just not finished yet’. I shape the clay but working with clay has shaped me. This craft has taught me patience and to become more detail-oriented. Pottery has schooled me and softened all my edges.”
Diane is not looking at making perfect cups with her art. ’It’s about expressing what is inside us which is sometimes bigger than our single selves. When I created the Emergence Line, my intention was to recognize the warmth and light of our humanity in the dishes from which we eat and drink. Playing with the crossing point of warmth and light, a lifeline of colour formed. Out of this lifeline a new story arose. After my Emergence Line, came my Epiphany Line which is a dance of the Emergence colours formally embedded in the story. One way or another, life is expressed through colour. Once my pottery is in the hands of others, the story takes on a new shape and becomes their story.”
Diane Walters doesn’t believe that anyone can be 100% sustainable but “I am doing my damndest and I think I do one hell of a job being sustainable. It takes a whole lot more time to recycle than just buy new.”
Nonetheless, recycling clay is where she puts her main effort. “I have a catch bucket system for the clay. The old trimmings become the new pot. I am careful about how I use chemicals and what I pour down the drain.”
D.E. Walters strives to improve her practice through Artisans at Work, a movement that is reclaiming the work of the artisan. “The main challenge now, as well as the responsibility of artisans today, is to continue to invite people to the table of creativity and connection where all things come from. It is important to recognize that our work truly nourishes the human spirit, and produces more than a materialized item that looks good”, she concludes.
Nelson’s Artisans at Work invite the public for an encounter that becomes an experience for local and tourists alike. For more information visit artisansaloeuvre.com
Emergence Line Vol.2
The Art of Craft ‘Emergence’
My work has always been an attempt to go to the source of things and the ground we stand on is the source of my art and inspiration. My new product line, ‘Emergence’, is an effort to raise the way we think about the art behind the craft of making earth’s dishes.
Born out of global isolation and social distancing, my choice of glaze showcases how ceramics capture light and warmth with an interplay of light and colour. The meeting point represents art as a life-line during challenging times. The interior glaze is reminiscent of candlelight meant to symbolize the warmth and comfort of connection (to others, to ourselves, and to the Earth) while the white gloss exterior catches the light of mind and life!
I believe that there is nothing more important than the communal act and art of eating. The social reciprocity of sharing a meal together dates back through the human story on a global scale. Each vessel holds the capacity for nourishment held on many levels. The capacity of my dishes serve as a reminder to explore our human capacities for mind/ heart connections.
The meal as a social art, pairs the union of communal connection with creativity.