Rita Petri

Clay Artist. Sculptor, Jewelry Designer

Ucluelet, BC

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With over 40 years experience and education in ceramics and design, Rita Petri knows clay. Her formal art education began in 1968 at Montana State University and was followed by a year in drawing and design at the University of Alberta in 1973. A move to BC in 1974 took Rita to the Vancouver School of Art where her ceramics focus shifted from wheelwork to hand-build pots - mostly porcelain pinch pots - to mixed-media sculpture.

Relocating to Ucluelet BC on the stunningly beautiful west coast of Vancouver Island in 1994 renewed her connection with and love for clay. An increased sensitivity to the environment led her away from the high-fire stoneware and porcelain work to low-fire terra cotta and white earthenware clay.

Rita possesses a profound sensitivity to the issues of women and homelessness that is reflected in her on-going artistic focus, The @ Home Series.

Artist Statement

My work with the female form has grown, I think, both from a feminist-political perspective honed by seven years' work in a women's shelter, and the sheer sensual pleasure of sculpting the smooth roundness of my fat figures. I simply love the ruddy warmth of the terra cotta clay.