Marcia Hovland Demos at our October Second Saturday

October 11, 2017

Marcia Hovland’s artwork has a way of making people feel happy.

Whether the playful bunnies that find their way onto many of her tiles and ornaments or tiny bees dangling from earrings or the small statuettes of people, animals or angels, Hovland’s creations enchant.

“People do say they make them feel good,” says Hovland, adding that she finds inspiration from storybooks and everywhere. “I make a lot of one of a kind’s. They’re all differently painted. I have some characters I develop and use them over and over again – kitties, bunnies, people – I’m making my own little world with the kinds of things I gravitate towards.”

As part of Second Saturday, Hovland will demonstrate how she paints on bisque and greenware to make her creations 11 AM-4 PM Saturday, Oct. 14at Pewabic. She’ll share how she selects clay for its different effects and brushes that help her paint the intricate details, avoiding dragging and fuzziness.

“I’ll tell them tidbits about the brushes I use. You need a good brush that holds paint,” explains Hovland, who prefers a Winsor #1 and often paints using the lids of the many glazes and underglazes she uses, adding a few drops of water to the paint.

Those who aren’t comfortable with brushes – Hovland gracefully maneuvers hers like a pen – can incise or scratch designs with a pintool and using wax resist on the greenware, rubbing it black with underglaze. She also employs a pintool to hold beads, turning it as she paints, or glues beads onto a ceramic plate to secure for glazing and firing.

“I try to teach students how to let the brush flow; how to get the underglaze line more refined,” says Hovland, explaining how the smaller, detailed pieces often build to bigger mosaics.

These days mosaics make up much of Hovland’s work, following a process that begins with her carefully spacing out her beads and small ceramic characters. She applies yogurt-thick dark grout over the mosaic pieces, later washing and lightly buffing the piece. The mosaics take multiple forms including paperweight-like half orbs – a friend dubs them “life buoys” for their charm – as well as frames or tiles Hovland creates and fills with mosaic pieces.

“I had made beads for a while and I thought this would be a neat idea,” she explains. “It’s another way of trying to do something other than a plain tile.”

Mosaics are nothing new for Hovland, who with fellow ceramicist Laurie Eisenhardt was behind the community-created Royal Oak Public Library mosaic that began in 2010 from scrap materials that remained from artists that participated in the annual Royal Oak Clay and Glass Show.

Hovland’s connection with Pewabic began in the early ‘90s when she enrolled in several tile classes. Before long she began to teach jewelry-making and hand-building classes at the pottery and opened a studio and gallery in Royal Oak in 1998, which moved to its current location at 415 E. 4th Street in 2003.





Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Blog

Founders+Pewabic team up for limited run Cone 6 IPA
Founders+Pewabic team up for limited run Cone 6 IPA

August 14, 2019

Founders Brewing Co.’s Detroit Taproom crafts a piney limited-run collaboration with Pewabic.

View full article →

Meet José Arenivar-Gomez, the artist behind Maker/Mentor 2019 Best of Show
Meet José Arenivar-Gomez, the artist behind Maker/Mentor 2019 Best of Show

July 17, 2019

José Arenivar-Gomez was on the job less than a week when he submitted a few of his ceramic sculptures for consideration in the annual staff and student exhibition. Not only did juror Kenyon Hansen select his work to be in the show, he named Not in the Mood best of show.

View full article →

Our tile showroom's fresh look aims to inspire every style
Our tile showroom's fresh look aims to inspire every style

July 11, 2019

Now visitors can better experience the wide array of Pewabic tile profiles and color palettes in our newly renovated tile showroom, making it easier than ever to get started on an architectural job, no matter the style or size.

View full article →