Patty Osborne Pottery

3415 Kelsey Road, Denman Island
(At Gilded Petunia Pottery Studio)

This will be Patty’s first time being part of the Denman Island Pottery Studio tour and she is happy to be able to display her pottery at the Gilded Petunia Pottery, the studio of her friend, Jeanie Rogers.

Patty has been a part-time resident of Denman Island since 1981 and her ceramic work reflects the beauty of the environment in the area. Where once Patty’s work was almost all thrown on the wheel, in the past ten years she has moved more toward handbuilding so that she can produce work that has multiple textures which bring out different tones in her glazes.

“I’ve become obsessed with texture, and clay is a perfect medium for achieving textured surfaces. I started by carving lines in the clay surface but then I discovered that manmade object (such as the floor mat from my old Honda Civic, the sole of my sandals, or corrugated cardboard), when pressed into a smooth slab of clay, make textures that seem to come from the natural world. Everywhere I look I find objects that just might make a good texture in clay.”

When she is not making textured functional ware, Patty goes to the other extreme and throws small, smooth balls that will not be glazed.

Instead, while they are still damp, they are burnished until they shine and then they are fired using a variety of low-temperature firing methods such as sawdust firing, pit firing, or naked raku firing. After these pieces are fired, conservator’s wax is rubbed into their still-porous surfaces. The wax protects the surfaces from dust and gives the balls a subtle shine. While these pieces are not functional in a traditional way, when they are picked up and handled, they are said to be soothing to the soul.