Born on the island of Cyprus to a Cypriot father and a British mother, Maria Sparsis has also lived and worked in Wales, Scotland, New England and, for the last 15 years, Florida. a Marine Biologist by training and a scientist by inclination, Maria is a certified diver and has a deep commitment to, and love of, nature in all its forms.
Although Maria still maintains her ties with the world of science and biology, she is currently part owner of "Tea and Chi", a premium loose-leaf tea company. Her love of tea and her collection of teapots was what initially bought her to the world of ceramics.
Much of Maria's artwork is inspired by both her love and knowledge of nature and her sense of humor and fondness for the absurd. Much of her work is functional in nature and often, tea related. Maria has studied ceramics with Sean Clinton, Nancy Blair, Glenda Tailor and Charlie Riggs, Nan Jacobson, Walford Campbell, Fong Choo, Eric Olsen and Ying Zhou.
Maria's work has been exhibited at The Armory, The Sparta Teapot Museum, The Fish House Art House and the Vero Beach Museum of Art. Her work can be seen at Flametree Clay Art Gallery in Vero Beach and Fitch and Fellows Gallery in Oxfordshire. She currently teaches pottery classes at Indian River Clay, Inc.
GINNY PIECH STREET
Ginny grew up in Indiana, spent some time in Kentucky, the Low Country of South Carolina and Key West before sailing to Fort Pierce and calling the Treasure Coast her home. She had the pleasure of being a co-creator of Art Mundo, A Center Of Creative Expression in downtown Fort Pierce, where she later partnered with 4 other artists to open Peacock Clay Collaborative, a working clay studio, also in downtown Fort Pierce. When Peacock Clay closed due to an unrelated fire in the building, she had the opportunity to continue her clay work as co-founder and studio manager for Indian River Clay in Vero Beach.
Ginny says "I’m appreciative of the interest and support that the residents of the Treasure Coast have for the arts. With a BFA in printmaking, I am way out of my league with clay, but playing in the mud is too much fun. I’ve been working in clay for about 6 years and have found that it is easy to carry one’s imagery and style from medium to medium. The tactile nature of clay immediately engages my senses and involves me creatively. One can’t be passive when ones hands are deep in mud!"
She also enjoy collaboration as it nurtures a strong creative environment and builds lasting alliances in the art community. She's been hooked on the creative process for as long as she can remember, enjoying the surprise of where it takes her. Ginny's desire is to share this joy.
Glenda Taylor has been a studio potter for over 40 years, after receiving her BFA in Ceramics at University of Florida. She is a fourth generation Floridian, and lives full time in Vero Beach. As an avid scuba diver, her work is inspired by the beautiful sea life and tropical flora and fauna of her coastal environment.
For 30 years Glenda's studio could be found at Tiger Lily, an art gallery and studio space that she, along with other female artists, established in Vero Beach, Florida. Glenda has been featured on the cover of the country’s most prestigious ceramics magazine, Ceramics Monthly. She has also received recognition in Southern Living Magazine.
Glenda is represented by The Cheryl Newby Gallery and her one-of-a-kind decorative vessels and tile work are in many public and private collections throughout the world. Glenda has exhibited in over thirty group shows, and her work is included in many distinguished collections, including the White House. She has taught ceramics at the Vero Beach Museum of Art and has been an active supporter of the pottery community. She is well known and a greatly respected member of our local community.
Born and raised on Florida’s east coast, Zoey fell in love with creating at a young age. Finger paints turning into acrylics, and discovering a love for clay early in high school. She couldn’t get enough of turning mud into life! This passion was greatly explored at a local pottery and paint studio. She soon was running summer camps and teaching children and adults alike the basics of ceramics, or even simply just getting a paintbrush wet and grooving.
If she is not outdoors enjoying the vastly diverse and beautiful, Florida landscape, she is trying to create something aesthetically pleasing for others to deeply enjoy. But more importantly sharing the power of creativity in her community.
Art in the community unites, yet brings recognition to the individual. When you bring to life something deep inside and it resonates with many others... you realize what you feel is shared and your ideas appreciated. Everyone has a different style of interpretation and that should be explored in a safe welcoming environment.
Amy grew up spending time with her grandfather while he sculpted, painted and draw. Over the years Amy has been privileged to work and learn from wonderful generous clay artists. She has never lost her imagination.
Kevin was first introduced to Ceramics in High School in 1970 and had the benefit of three years of instruction with a working artist who created his work in the classroom. It was at that time that he was hooked on clay. He pursued a number of different career paths, yet always was drawn back to clay. Having attended numerous Colleges and Universities which included Tyler School of Art (Temple University), University of the Arts, and Glassboro State College where he was the studio technician and gained numerous perspectives on the Arts community and clay in general. Many experiences have taught him what didn't work and provided him with invaluable experience. His love of teaching kept calling him back and finding his own vision for creating his own unique body of work took him to The Cherokee Arts Center outside Atlanta where he could pursue both.
He works in hand-built slab paper porcelain while maintaining a passion for wheel thrown ceramics. He absolutely loves teaching and loves learning from his students while they learn from his experience of over 50 years of involvement in the Arts and Ceramics. His teaching style is energetic, enthusiastic and focused on his students gaining technical proficiency in order to unlock their own innate creative ability and fulfill their own vision. His classes are fun and focused on experiencing and learning techniques while some have used the term, edutainment.
Interested in teaching a class? Simply complete the proposal form by clicking the link below!