Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Marilyn MacLean - P.E.I. Potters Cove

Marilyn is a student of Ron Arvidson who attended Holland College School of Visual Arts pottery program in 1982 and followed Ron to the P.E.I. Potters Studio in Victoria Park where both have taught over the years. Her business operates under the name PEI Potter's Cove.

An article on Marilyn's work was published in The Guardian in 2018.

Thirty year passion for pottery turns into side business for P.E.I. artist
Mitch MacDonald (mitchell.macdonald@theguardian.pe.ca) 
Published: Feb 19, 2018
Marilyn MacLean, of P.E.I. Potters Cove, shows some of her work during a craft fair at the Confederation Centre of the Arts. MacLean, who has 35 years of experience making pottery, has seen the demand for her product grow rapidly since creating a home studio last year. MacLean plans to sell her products at local craft shops, the Colonel Gray craft fair and Farm Day in the City before she makes it a full-time job in her retirement. MITCH MACDONALD/THE GUARDIAN

Marilyn MacLean’s successful pottery business appears to be fate.
MacLean, who has nearly 35 years of experience making pottery, has seen the demand for her product grow rapidly since starting her side business P.E.I. Potter’s Cove about a year ago from her Clyde River Home.
The name has an interesting story behind it, said MacLean.
According to the community’s website, a previous MacLean family that lived in the area in the 1850s had a property boundary marked by a cove named “Potter’s Cove” because of the brick kiln that was once located there.
I thought it was fate, it was like it was meant to be,” said MacLean, whose business previously went by “pottery by Marilyn MacLean”. “I’ve had a passion for pottery for over 30 years and finally I realized my dream of having a home studio.”
MacLean said she fell in love with pottery by accident after applying for Holland College’s graphic design course. 
However, the course was filled and MacLean didn’t want to put her education on hold for a year.
“I thought I’d try another medium and pottery was in the course catalogue,” said MacLean. “The rest is history.”
MacLean later worked at The Dunes before taking business at Holland College.
She has worked at Bell Aliant, formerly Island Tel, for the last 25 years, but has never stopped creating pottery.
Once the college closed its fine arts program almost 20 years ago, several former students formed the P.E.I. Potters Studio Co-op in Victoria Park and MacLean was invited to be an instructor.
MacLean is still one of the co-op’s three instructors and teaches both adults and children pottery.
However, last spring saw MacLean realize her dream of making her own home pottery studio.
Starting with a few items for sale, MacLean’s products were in New London’s Village Pottery all last summer.
While she has had orders from as far away as Oregon and British Columbia, MacLean has seen much of her sales come from other local craft shops as well as through individuals at craft fairs and Farm Day in the City.
With somewhat of an overwhelming demand for her products, MacLean said she hopes to keep her production on a lower scale until turning it into a new full-time job once she retires.
“I’ll do my best to make everybody happy and enjoy the success and I’d imagine it will just get better,” she said.

MacLean said she feels her involvement in pottery was fate and noted that she is a “medical miracle.”

When MacLean was born, she spent two years in the hospital while on oxygen, which resulted the loss of sight in one eye.
“It’s odd that life is just, it’s so special and I don’t take it for granted,” said MacLean. “That’s my purpose in life, to spread the love and passion of pottery.”
More information on MacLean’s work is available through the P.E.I. Potters Cove Facebook page.

Marilyn MacLean's pottery is sold through Village Pottery in New London, PEI.

Pottery by Marilyn MacLean

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