Mary Mar Keenan

Making pottery requires creativity, patience and endurance. Exercising these traits keeps me happy as an artist and strengthens me as an individual. In my work I do my best to give equal attention to form and spontaneity, contrast and color. I love the freedom within clay and yet am challenged daily by its rigid constraints. I am driven by the quiet conversation between maker and user. Playing a role in enhancing the daily rituals of eating and drinking is a privilege. My history with clay began at Roanoke College where I earned a BFA in 1996, while furthering my education by studying ceramics in Italy (Studio Art Centers International) in Colorado (Anderson Ranch Art Center) and in North Carolina (Penland School of Crafts). My work has been published in clay-centered publications such as Lark Books’ 500 Teapots, and I’ve exhibited work in stores and galleries throughout the country. I’ve made pots to be used in many San Francisco restaurants including The Progress, A16, SPQR, Butterfly, Tablespoon and Myth, and have designedPrint Stop custom dinnerware for numerous homes in the Bay Area. My work has been sold at various retail shows and art festivals around California and am an exhibiting member of the Association of Clay and Glass Artists in California. I’ve taught children’s art classes in the past and designed an after-school clay class for kids ages 6-10. For seven years I owned and operated Verdigris Clay Studio and Gallery in SF where I worked as a studio artist and exhibited and managed the sales of ceramic work by over 30 Bay Area artists. After my first child was born I started Purple Bird Designs, a small online business making customized ceramic baby gifts. Currently, my studio is situated in the heart of Hayes Valley (nestled behind Blue Bottle Coffee) where I continue to be inspired to make and design elegant yet noteworthy tableware for those interested in eating and serving off of beautiful handmade pots.

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