FUSION IS TURNING 50!
Founded in 1974 as the Ontario Potters Association, the organization was expanded in 1986 when the original articles were amended to include glass artists and the name was changed to FUSION: The Ontario Clay and Glass Association. Since then FUSION has made it it's mandate to celebrate and support clay and glass artists in Ontario and beyond with educational opportunities, exhibitions, sales, a magazine, social functions and more!
Testimonials & Quotes from FUSION Members
TAKE A WALK DOWN MEMORY LANE
Hi FUSION Members! Please send in your (1-2 sentence) testimonials and or pictures that document FUSION'S journey through time. This section will be populated by your contributions! Send directly to firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact us button!
"For me, becoming the Publications Director, and President of FUSION, and setting up the audio visuals for conferences, was a case of "giving back" to the community over several years in very difficult financial times, made easier thanks to a dedicated team of friendly volunteers."
"I was on the Board of Directors of Fusion for 6 years. Wow did I learn a lot! It was interesting, exciting and I met so many wonderful people. Following Chris and Barbara as President was no small task. Running the conference was always much work but equally exciting, I met so many wonderful potters & artists. Working with the team was always fun and effective."
I have always felt that there is no higher calling than serving my community. I have made lifelong friends because of my work with FUSION. It's always easier NOT to do something, but a lot of very interesting things happen when you say, "YES!"
"I was a founding member and a board member and presenter. I was also the person who suggested that the OPA change its name to "Fusion". Fusion has been the life and soul of like minded Clay and Glass artists for "50" years. For me it created an amazing extended family of supporters, collaborators, soul mates and friends. I also was involved with a number of Fusion conferences and workshops with the last conference in 2006 with Clay Icon Robin Hopper at Canadore College in North Bay!"
Keith Campbell SCA
Artist in Residence Emeritus
"During my terms as President of FUSION in the 1990’s, I was able to meet and interact with many internationally renowned clay artists, but my greatest privilege was working with a dedicated and creative Board of Directors."
"Being a member of Fusion is a means for me to meaningfully connect to other makers and designers through workshops and digital publications. Too often I can feel a bit isolated in a studio. It's nice to talk to other makers and designers and share ideas, concepts, and adventures in our mediums. For me Fusion is important to my practice and builds community."
"My time on the Board, in the capacity of Secretary, Treasurer and President, gave me the opportunity to work with the amazing staff and Directors to further FUSION's goals."
"Rebuilding the organization after Covid was a huge challenge with immeasurable rewards to follow. Building a new board with dedicated and talented people who are all working towards the same goal has brought new friends and meaning to my life. I can fulheartedly echo Chris Snedden's words that saying "yes" brings with it many new and interesting experiences!"
“As a former Board member, I am proud of what FUSION brings to its membership. An opportunity to continue learning via the Conference and the Winter Workshops, an opportunity to sell our work through the Clay and Glass Show and to show our creativity and unique Clay creations through the travelling exhibition Fireworks.”
I had a long run with FUSION, 12 years on the board and before that as a volunteer, director of guild relations, the mentorship and creative directions program, winter workshops, president and so on. I learned so much and met so many fantastic makers from all over Ontario. One of the most exciting years was when Chris Snedden organized the Korean potters confrence.
It's truly remarkable to see how far FUSION has evolved since its inception 50 years ago. I am inspired by the impact it has had on our community through the many programmes and events over the years. As I reflect on my time on the board twenty years ago celebrating our 30th anniversary, I am filled with pride to have been a part of such a dynamic and passionate group of volunteers many of whom are still my friends today. This 50th anniversary milestone is a testament to FUSION’s unwavering dedication to the clay and glass community. Congratulations!
FUSION MAGAZINE OF CLAY AND GLASS
When I became Editor of The Ontario Potter magazine, it was a beautiful bi-annual publication that the efforts of Bill Eames, the previous Editor developed from a newsletter. My first issue of the Ontario Potter produced with my editorial board is ( photo #1) shown below.
The contents covered a wide range of issues such as ceramic history, pottery techniques, exhibitions, profiles of potters and contemporary ceramic issues written by and for potters. In my first issue there were articles by Bob Tichane, Harry Davis, Jackie Seaton, Keith Campbell,Tony Clennell, Priscilla de Villiers, and ten others.
Priscilla deVilliers wrote the cover story ‘Four Thousand Years of Clay’ based on the collection of Chinese ceramics at the gallery of Far Eastern Art at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. Priscilla became my Associate Editor because of her tenacious efforts in researching, gathering, and writing articles.
In 1985, Priscilla and I went to Ottawa to meet with Luc Jutras, head of the Writing and Publication Section at The Canada Council to obtain an application for Aid to Periodicals as our writers were not being paid. We also wanted to expand the audience by creating a national publication. We had to introduce advertising and subscriptions and would have to change the format and title so the the magazine could be placed on news stands and address a wider audience and finally to separate Ontario business into a newsletter. After making these changes, The Canada Council approved a grant for the amount of $5,000 to pay writers for our bi-annual publication.
Priscilla came up with the idea of holding a contest to rename the magazine by holding a contest and rewarding the winner a bowl by Shimaoka who had been visiting Ontario giving workshops that year. Keith Campbell was declared the winner with the name FUSION. I taught ceramics at the Dundas Valley School of Art. Many of the artists that taught at the DVSA were well known Canadian Artists. They volunteered to help design the logo and the format for FUSION including the subscription insert. Tucker’s Pottery Supply and the Pottery Supply house purchased ads for the front and back covers.
The first edition of FUSION, the magazine for clay & glass is shown in photo (#2) below.
A few years later The Ontario Potters Association changed the name to FUSION.
FUSION 4th INTERNATIONAL CERAMICS SYMPOSIUM EDGES: In Thought - In History - In Clay, a special bi-lingual edition funded by a $30,000 grant obtained by Ceramics Canada. I chose three ASSOCIATE EDITORS Gloria Hickey, Grace Inglis, and Priscilla de Villiers to cover The Vessel, The Figurative, and Museums and Public Art Galleries. FRENCH LANGUAGE EDITOR: Leopold Foulem. (Photo #3)
This is a story about Leopold Foulem, one of Canada’s premier ceramic artists.
The Symposium was held in Toronto over three days. On day one: THE VESSEL, there was a keynote address and a panel of six speakers. On the second day: THE FIGURATIVE, the panel consisted of seven speakers. On day three, MUSEUMS AND PUBLIC ART GALLERIES, a panel of three speakers. In addition, there were thirteen exhibitions, each reviewed by an individual writer. In total, the bi- lingual special edition consisted of 66 pages to be translated.
I suppose you are wondering why I am mentioning these statistics. Here is where Leopold Foulem comes in. Originally a French Pharmacist was appointed by the organizers of the grant to do the French translation. When I gave the written translation to Leopold, he was.horrified as the translator was not familiar with ceramics and the art world and had botched the meaning throughout the entire translation. Leopold insisted on volunteering to redo the translation without being paid! It took him two years to complete the French translation. Not only was Leopold a generous and kind man, I believe he was a genius when it came to creating his ceramic art. His work was brilliant and unique.
The ceramic community lost a great ceramic artist when Leopold Foulem died on February 18th, 2023 at the age of 77.