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Photo by Kaye Ly


A R T I S T  S T A T E M E N T

Mia Riley is an emerging Canadian ceramic artist. Having moved many times - her work is about diaspora, identity, culture and landscapes. She is a graduate of the Alberta University for the Arts where she received the 2016 Board of Governor’s Award for Academic Excellence in Ceramics. Post graduation she completed two residencies at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and interned at the Harvard Ceramics Program in Boston. She is a new member of the James Black Gallery in Vancouver and is looking forward to creating some of the projects she has dreamed up in the last year.

Our historical lineage with the clay runs deep and has the

ability it to evoke thoughts on survival, ritual, time and culture. The wetness of a glaze, the traces of destruction in a shard or the intimate size of a cup illustrate this narrative. Using the motif of duality as the foothold for my practice, I am interested in how visual contrasts can create both tension and harmony for the viewer. The backdrop for these ideas is a specific use of porcelain and stoneware that evokes the concept of duality through various sensory and emotional levels. My ceramic works are vestiges of moments and ideas, and turn the everyday into contemporary cultural relics.

She is currently working and living on the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. While she is grateful, she acknowledges that she is an uninvited guest and takes responsibility to understand the ongoing violent colonial legacy of Canada and work towards decolonization in her life, art practice and career. 

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