Artist Profiles - Carol Froimovitch
The following article first appeared in "The Low Down to Hull and Back News" in the May 04, 2005 issue. Reprinted with permission.
Chelsea's Carol Froimovitch: Creating Community
by Catherine Joyce
As a co-ordinator for "Art in the Village" (one day only, June 12, in the garden of the Joineryco), Carol Froimovitch is sending out the call. "Everyone is welcome. This is a wonderful opportunity - a non-juried show for artists and artisans to sell their handmade, original work. There are so many artists in Chelsea, working away in their little caves. This is a chance for them to be part of the essence of this community - to express the creative energy that defines these Hills."
Carol is not new to fostering community through the arts. A well-known potter, she has shared her passion for working in clay - through the Artists-in-the-School program at Chelsea Elementary, at Pierre Eliot Trudeau Elementary where she created a huge mural of ceramic tiles with the students, through workshops for home schoolers or for Kingsmere Summer Camp, to the programs she has taught at the Community Centre for all ages. With her kids grown, she has widened her field by earning a degree in Education. These days, if she is not in her studio, she can be found at Canterbury High School.
Born and raised in Montreal, Carol found her artistic direction by pursuing what she loved. Initially at McGill in Science, she transferred into piano performance. Two years later she enrolled in Fine Arts at York University, to graduate in 1974. "I kept experimenting, looking for my path.
I studied every art form, including film, animation, electronic music." Yet always there was this mysterious awanmess of clay - of finding ceramic studios and potters her inspiration. Whatever else she studied, she felt drawn to explore this handson, elemental medium - clay, the essence of the earth, of what we all come from.
One summer she 1earned the ancient art of raku, an experience she never forgot. "I am sure that first taste of wood fire led me to what I do today - firing outdoors in a wood fired kiln. I longed to be totally absorbed in the fire of making. I still do - it is a kind of ecstasy to be out there feeding the fire all day. I lose all sense of time, I become the fire."
Married to Dr. Mark Froimovitch, Carol moved for a time to the Meech Creek Valley where they opened their first Vet clinic in 1979, Surrounded by nature, she raised her three boys and discovered that clay could encompass everything she loves - her family, her friends, her animals. All of life came alive through her hands.
"Creating these vessels is a sensuous dialogue. There is a story in every pot, every cup, a story that continues out into the world. This is human evidence, not machine made. This is community - I make things for people, to answer their needs. I put my spirit into each piece, then it goes on its journey. I hope on June 12 other artists will join me - to share their creative spirit, to enrich our community." (Application forms at the municipal office, $50.)
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