I am a full time potter living and making ceramics in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada - the traditional lands of the Anishinabek Nation and the traditional territory of Fort William First Nation. I live in the city with my partner Bob, and work out of a small garage studio on my parent's property in the country north of town.
We are surrounded by gorgeous nature and wilderness where I live, and my work is a celebration of the plants that grow here. I use living plants as the main decoration by rolling fresh leaves and flowers into wet clay slabs. It still amazes me how much detail the clay picks up, every leaf vein and tiny hair are preserved once the plant is peeled away! The clay pieces are then fired and glazed to cone 8 (1250 C) in an electric kiln. At this point I sometimes refer to them as 'fossils' - the memory of the plant is now preserved in stone.
Over years of working with plants in this way, I find myself using this leaf-printing technique to process feelings of panic and despair about the ongoing climate crisis. Perhaps by preserving plants in durable ceramics, people in the far future may find these pottery shards and learn about the plants that once grew here.
After plants, the other focus of my work is functional design. I want the pots I create to be a joy to use in daily life, so I spend a lot of time on the design process testing for the most comfortable handle or best pouring spout. I believe that using handmade, thoughtfully designed pottery can add importance to our daily quiet rituals.
Whether making a cup of tea, preparing food, or decorating our space, using handmade pottery connects us to eachother, and also connects us to our long human history of making and using pottery. I hope my work brings comfort, joy, and reverence of our natural environment.
Kat Twomey has been working with clay since 2009, graduating from Fine Arts at Lakehead University with a major in Ceramics in 2013.
Black Dog Ceramics was originally started as a shared art space with Katie Lemeuix and Janet Twomey in 2015, who now work independently.
In 2018 Kat brought BDC to the public with a line of functional wares sold at local art sales.
In 2020 Kat transitioned to full time pottery, continuing to sell work locally and online.
Collections of work are released seasonally, and sold mainly through this website. If you wish to be notified of upcoming sales and behind the scenes processes, sign up to the email newsletter or follow along on Instagram.