At ten years old Carey Allan was introduced to pottery clay and couldn’t imagine, even then, what that spark would create. Now, many years later, Allan prefers the perfection she creates through imperfection of hand built pieces such as mugs or funky bowls, each with its own style.
As a teacher, Allan has helped her students to appreciate uniqueness of pottery art because essentially her students are learning to make something beautiful with their own hands from a ball of mud. Allan stated “There is something very satisfying about the entire process and it is always interesting to see what my students produce. While we follow a general lesson plan, each piece turns out entirely different and perfect in its own way.” This observation of pottery art and her life in general, prompted the name of her young business, Perfect Diversity.
Allan has created a space to invite other potters to visit and new potters to learn. The classroom is filled with new pieces from aspiring artists in the community and paints are set up for children to buy a pre-made piece to paint it. The chalkboard menu of organic teas and coffees, locally sourced, and ready for order makes this a place to just hang out in.
Clay has a life of its own, telling the potter what it wants to be and Allan has found the peace in herself to listen and create. The different curves and styles of the clay reveals themselves with the warmth of a hand and someone who has the patience to let things just be. A great lesson for all of us to learn as we experience all the differences that make up our community, all of the twists and turns we navigate and should appreciate instead of ignoring.
Allan prefers her work to be organic and ever changing, working with softened, or natural contours and edges, combined with contrasting textures, lines or patterns. “I am inspired constantly by my surroundings. My work could reflect nature, the ocean, the forest floor, a patchwork quilt, a piece of firewood or something from my dreams.” This is evident in each of her own pieces, making it a challenge to find the one each buyer prefers.
Allan and her husband moved to Pictou County just ten years ago by luck, following the natural curves of her own life. Finding a house with a studio through Kijiji and falling in love with it, sight unseen, they have since grown roots here and love all the spirit this county offers.
Being able to offer a place for artists to gather, Perfect Diversity is place for a variety
of community members as Allan welcomes other artists to display their works on a consignment basis.
Pottery is the ceramic material which makes up pottery wares, of which major types include earthenware, stoneware and porcelain. Pottery is simply something Allan loves and hopes others will be interested in. Having a passion for creation she hopes to pass it on through hosting birthday parties, classes and find another inner child/student who values one of the oldest human inventions as much as she does.
A form of therapy to some, either working the clay by hand or on the wheel (throwing), if you remain quiet and listen long enough, you too can grow to love the process and peace this artistry offers.