Intertwined with the figurative community of sculptors, models, students and instructors in the Bay Area, Tebby George, this week’s CCC artist, has shared the joy of working in clay for years as a Life Sculpture teacher at Fort Mason through City College of San Francisco. Teaching has a reciprocal affect, interweaving her work life with her creative life. “Ideas born in my studio contribute to the classroom and ideas born in the classroom contribute to my art.”
Tebby also keeps developing as a figurative artist by working weekly with a live model in a small group. (In fact, Tebby was my first life sculpture teacher and I have sculpted with her off and on for years.)
Using several types of clay, from smooth porcelain mixes to clays with heavy grog, Tebby likes mixing textures and clays, often combining terra sigillata on smooth clay and mason stains on rough clay in the same piece. For quick studies she enjoys the unpredictability of Raku. Her favorite part is seeing the subject emerge from the clay, sometimes with ease and sometimes after a struggle She works on several pieces at a time. Right now, she has a large portrait with a challenging pattern on a billowing scarf wrapping the neck and shoulders, and a figure of an angel going, plus, underglazing finishes on several fired pieces.
“I am moved to express in clay, the absolute beauty I see in the diversity of the Bay Area—the deep rich colors and forms surrounding me in the people I encounter every day. Being present in the elegance and force of the natural work in this area, the ocean, the rolling hills, the tall trees--frees me from the demands of the mundane and enables a space for creativity.”
Showing around the Bay Area: Vallejo Art Windows Installation, From Many Shores, a solo show at Throckmorton Main Theater Gallery, Face Time:Portrait of Marin County at the Civic Center Galleris in Marin, and Ceramic Sensibilities, Artworks Downtown 1337 Gallery, in San Rafael are a few shows she has participated in. But since the pandemic, she has been doing an online Open Studio, connecting with people who collect her work.
“When life is especially rocky, I depend on the comfort of the clay and tend to spend more time than usual in my studio. This keeps me healthy and somewhat sane, along with walking in nature, swimming and a meditation practice. “
Make sure to check out Tebby’s beautiful work and Open Studio at: www.tebbygeorge.com and on Facebook/tebbygeorge.