My name is Kay Ely-Pierce. I have worked in various media over the years. Currently, I focus on large scale acrylic paintings and ceramics.
I dabbled in metal sculpture while I was in law school and began painting in water colors in the mid 1990’s. That gave way to acrylics on canvas and other one-dimensional substrates. A few years later I started creating handbags and jewelry. In 2005, I began studying pottery with Donna Bean. My pottery shares a common theme with my other art. It’s all about dynamics (form, color, texture). Often, I mix media. I want my art to exude a sense of energy whether it is a ceramic vessel, a large scale acrylic, or a mixed media piece.
.My ceramics are of two types – traditional and raku. Traditional pottery and raku are both bisque-fired the same way, but the glazing process and glaze firing are very different.. Because of this, the traditional pottery, when finished, is microwave and dishwasher safe, as well as being waterproof. Raku pottery is NOT dishwasher or microwave safe and is NOT waterproof. Both types of pottery are food-safe, but the raku should be limited to dry foods.
I have no art degree. What I have instead are (in this order) a BS in Agriculture (double major, no less…plant science and ag education) from the University of Delaware; a MA in Education from WV U; a JD from the University of Richmond School of Law; a BS in Nursing from VCU/MCV and finally a Certificate of Clinical Bioethics from the Medical College of Wisconsin. I’d go into my “career history” but you’d never believe it. Suffice it to say that I was born and raised on a dairy farm in eastern Maryland. I have lived in places as diverse as New York City; Box Elder, Montana; Metlakatla, Alaska; and Sells, Arizona and have been a teacher, flight attendant, dental assistant, attorney, nurse, university instructor, guest lecturer and healthcare law & bioethics consultant. Go figure…
My studio is in a hidden valley, surrounded by 40 acres of orchard grass and hardwood trees, less than a mile from the North Fork of the Shenandoah River. I’m married to my best friend and we have two amazing grown-up children.