Potter ready for pow wowPublished 10:05pm Tuesday, August 21, 2012
For the third year in a row, pottery artist and Pokagon Band of Potawatomi citizen Kathy Getz Fodness will offer ornate, yet functional, pieces at the 27th annual Kee-Boon-Mein-Kaa Pow Wow.
Fodness began working in pottery when she was in high school, but took a long hiatus when she entered the professional working world. About four years ago, she delved back into the artistry and began taking classes and honing her skills at the South Bend Museum of Art.
“I like to create things that are beautiful and functional,” Fodness said. “I’m such a practical person; I want to make things that can do something, as well as be beautiful to look at.”
The functional approach to her pottery has also helped Fodness find a broader market.
“I can appeal to some who like the decorative side, and I have something for those who want to justify their purchase by buying something they can use,” Fodness said.
This year’s pow wow, which takes place over Labor Day weekend, will be the third opportunity for Fodness to participate as a vendor. After some coaxing, Fodness, a lifelong attendee of the annual pow wow, decided to become a vendor and sell her pottery.
“I used to go every year as a spectator, but it’s never been a better time to be an artist in the Band,” Fodness said. “With our growth and expansion, I’ve been able to create pieces for new buildings, and it’s been such a wonderful experience.”
Some of the pieces t Fodness said she was excited to display include her current favorite: a turtle vase with “beautiful glazing.”
“I love bright, eye-catching colors, so I often use a turquoise glaze,” Fodness said. “I have a whole line of turtle pieces, and I’m really excited to have them at the pow wow.”
The opportunity to work at the South Bend Museum of Art, where Fodness said so many people are available to lend a helping hand, has also helped the artist recognize where her inspiration comes from.
“It’s the same thing with the tribe … so many people lend their hand,” Fodness said. “They feed my inspiration.”
The Kee-Boon-Mein-Kaa Pow Wow is Sept. 1-2, with gates opening at 10 a.m. both days at the Pokagon Band’s pow wow arena, 58620 Sink Rd., Dowagiac.