Sunday, December 28, 2014

The Guild's Ana Varela quoted and featured in Senior Times, "Creativity is a great, great reward."

When you first see Ana Varela's art pieces as you walk into the guild gallery, they draw you in. Her designs are so whimsical and colorful just like Ana herself. I had the pleasure of working with her last week at the Guild. It was a pleasant afternoon as she refilled her display with more wonderful pottery pieces since she sold so many recently. I realized as the afternoon continued she was the artist featured in the Senior Times article in the December 2014 issue.

I learned about Ana's life from the article. Born in Brazil, her adventurous spirit brought her to America at 17, she is now 61 and resides in Micanopy, with her husband, Doug Dewey, also a celebrated artist. She is a graduate of UF, with a B.A. in Ceramics. Her studio "Tuscawilla Pottery" is located on her home property in Micanopy, where she has hosted an annual Holiday Celebration and open house for the last 18 years.

Ana has made a life of selling art with her pottery. She has regularly participated in art festivals all over the Southeast for many years. Recently she added to her many awards with 3 prizes in the show circuit this year; 3rd place in 3-D at the Winter Haven Art Festival, Award of Merit at Mainsail Arts Festival and her favorite show, St. Augustine Art Festival, winning Best of Pottery. Ana especially likes St. Augustine because there were 18 male potters and she was the only woman, winning the Best of Pottery. The judge in that festival was Ed Hall, who has a Master in Painting from UF, and has achieved some fame nationally with his cartoons.

Ana loves her work and puts in about 40 hours a week as a fulltime artist. As she said in the Senior Times article, her intent is to design pieces that bridge art and function. We are so proud to have her as a member of the Artisans' Guild.