Mary Ann Steggles

Dr. Mary Ann Steggles

Mary Ann Steggles and DuncanI grew up in Oklahoma and moved to Canada during the Vietnam Conflict. I have fond memories of those years living in Southern Manitoba where I set up a pottery studio after studying with John Reeve at the Sheridan College of Art and Design when it was in Missassaugua, Ontario and then with Paul Soldner. Some potters are pyromaniacs and my fondest for how the flame kissed the sides of the pots came out when I was able to build a large salt kiln. I was fortunate to be selected as the Artist in Residence for The Department of Cultural Affairs in our region and as one of the practicing artists who was part of the launch of the Manitoba Arts Council’s Artist-in-the Schools Program as well as helping to found the Manitoba Craft Council with such wonderful folks as Ione Thorkellson, Duane Perkins, Kirk Creed and Marilyn Foubert. Each allowed me to meet a whole bunch of wonderful people! Many continue to be friends and colleagues today. Lady luck intervened years later and my life became more enriched by people and places during my MA and Ph.D. I have been back in Manitoba for 15 years. And today, besides teaching and being the silent partner in The Hive in Luang Prabang, Lao, I help administer the School of Art at the University of Manitoba with Paul Hess.

I am currently investigating the contemporary state of the studio pottery movement internationally. My research, 'Where Have All the Potters Gone' appears in Art and Perception: Technical (November 2013), Topferblatt (Fruhling 1/2013) and as a presentation for NCECA, Milwaukee, USA, 2014 along with my panelists: Robin Hopper, Mark Hewitt, and Lisa Hammond.

In addition to my ongoing interest in validating the role of functional ceramics, I have a special interest in women artists. Two different projects include an ongoing text and curatorial project on women who build and fire their own wood kilns. This research is mean to challenge ideas put forth by Moira Vincentelli in her books on women potters and in particular the perceptions or misperceptions on women's ability. The second project focuses on the textile work of the village women living near to Luang Prabang, Laos. 

I am currently completing a university text, The Branches of the Bodhi Tree, with Dr. Cristofre Martin, St. George's University, Grenada. Publication date: July 2014.

My earlier research focused on the propaganda and political aspects of British colonial public monuments. It was published in History TodayThe Sculpture JournalMargChowkidar and in two separate volumes, The Statues of the Raj (2001) and British Sculpture in India: New Views and Old Memories (2012).


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