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Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. Simonides

Zsuzsa Monostory

I was born and raised in Budapest, Hungary, where I received my formal education and PhD in Biology. I came to Canada in 1989 to work in a research institute. I stumbled upon clay by chance, and the engagement became so strong, it ended my career as a biologist. In retrospect, it was the best thing that ever could have happened to me.

I joined a potters guild in 1992 and met a group of women who shared a common passion for raku. This was my choice of firing for many years. Raku provided me with the finished surface that best reflected my artistic vision for my sculptural pieces. It was with this group of women that I had my first exhibition.

I set up a home studio where I have worked alone for the past 14 years. I connect with other potters at shows, conferences, exhibitions and workshops. In 2003 I participated in a workshop where we built and fired a wood kiln. After the first firing, I was hooked as it added a whole new colour to my palette.

In 2006 I traveled with 3 fellow North American wood fire potters to participate in a residency program at the International Ceramic Studio in Kecskemet Hungary. It was another great experience. Upon returning to Canada, I could hardly wait to get back to my studio to make new pieces for my next firing. I was thrilled to be part of a wood firing collective here in Canada, where we not only fire together, but we laugh, connect, socialize and enjoy each others company. We had our first exhibition in 2007 and titled it “Women Who Wood”.

Working alone for 14 years has been wonderful, but it has been lonely. In 2007, I decided to join The Williams Mill Art Centre where I enjoy the company and community of other full time artists.

I continue to be inspired by all things living. Perhaps it is my background in biology that makes the human form and behaviour most intriguing to me. I strive to bring the gesture of human connections and relationships to life in my work.
Student Awards Finalist: Sculptural Ceramics, Niche Magazine

2000 Studio Pottery Design, Artsperience Summer Course, Canador College, 
Northbay, Ontario.
1999 Mold making, Artsperience Summer Course, Canador College, Northbay, 
1996 Life study for sculpture, OCA, Toronto
1995 Life modeling with clay, OCA, Toronto
Figure drawing, OCA, Toronto
1994 Clay sculpting, Koffler Gallery, Toronto
1993 Clay sculpting, Koffler Gallery, Toronto
1992 Hand-building with clay, Sheridan College, Oakville
1991 Pottery, Central Tech., Toronto
1989-1994 Postdoctoral fellow, Mount Sinai Hospital. Research Inst. Toronto
1983 Ph.D. in Genetics, Lorand Eotvos University, Budapest, Hungary
1977 Master of Science in Biology and Chemistry, Lorand Eotvos University, 
Budapest, Hungary

2008 Best in Clay, Pottery Supply House Award, John Summer Juried Art 
2006 Purchase Award, Orton Cone Box Show2004 Honourable Mention, Director’s Guild of Canada, Cabbage Town Arts 
and Crafts Show
2004 Fusion award, Toronto Potters 12th Biannual Juried Exhibition
2003 Honourable Mention, Kaleidoscope 2003, Arts Burlingtion 
2002 Best Non-Functional Award, Celebrations, In Clay, Burlington Art Centre, 
2001 Best in Show Award, Juried miniature Show, Michael Gibson Gallery, 
London, Ontario
2001 Judge’s Choice, Kaleidoscope 2001, Burlington Art Center
2000 The Henry Goodman Best in Show Award. at 10th Biennial Juried 
“Fireworks” Exhibition
2000 Fusion Purchase Award. at 10th Biennial Juried “Fireworks” Exhibition

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