Pottery is one of the oldest industries known to humankind. As soon as humans discovered that they could form objects out of clay, a creative, hand-crafted, locally made industry was born.
Fast forward oh… thousands of years… and here we are today featuring one of Chilliwack’s very own potters.
Many of us may not consider ourselves artists, but in the eyes of this Maker, we are all artists. Some of us just may not have found what medium we prefer to use to create.
MEET THE MAKER
Meet Aleena Webber, owner of Three Corners Artisan and Maker of Pottery.
Growing up in the small town of Princeton, BC Aleena’s love of pottery started in high school. In their small town, Pottery wasn’t offered as an elective, but an art teacher, who had studied pottery in Vietnam, would create amazing pieces in his spare time at lunch and after school. She and two friends begged their art teacher to teach them how to do use the wheel. Their teacher agreed, and shortly after that, Aleena’s love for pottery began.
After some time, the teacher told the three students that one of them would make pottery a lifelong passion of theirs – little did Aleena know, that it would be her!
Once Aleena graduated high-school, she worked long hours at a jewellery store, and truly loved her job. Aleena eventually married the love of her life, had three boys and, when it came down to it, she realized she loved her kids much more than her job, so she decided to quit the jewellery store to stay home with them.
One day, Aleena’s husband looked at her and said, “You need a hobby!” and, at the time, Aleena couldn’t agree more. Aleena then started to explore the possibility of bringing pottery back into her life. The only issue this time around was that she didn’t have access to a kiln. Without one, the items she created would simply just dry and break.
Thankfully, Aleena’s inability to access a kiln didn’t last long. One day, they discovered an estate sale down the road and, what do you think was at that estate sale? You guessed it. A lot of floral couches, china plates – oh, and a kiln. That’s right! A KILN!
Aleena couldn’t believe it! Not only did she just determine she wanted to start doing pottery again, but the opportunity was standing right there in front of her.
After Aleena got the kiln installed, she knew pottery was going to be a long-term gig for her. She started out in the corner of her kids’ playroom (#momlife) in their home in Abbotsford, and later she and her family re-located to Chilliwack and dedicated their carriage house as a full-fledged pottery studio. Pretty cool, hey?
WHERE DID THE NAME COME FROM?
The name, “Three Corners Artisan” was based on a few things. The first one being the position that a potter would be in when working: hands on the wheel, elbows on the knees. This forms a triangle – or, three corners. Next, Aleena assigned each of the three corners a meaning: her faith, family, and her business. They are her three anchor points in life; enter, Three Corners Artisan.
WHAT MAKES THREE CORNERS ARTISAN DIFFERENT THAN OTHER POTTERY COMPANIES?
If you’ve seen Aleena’s work, you know this question may answer itself. But, we wanted to dig a little deeper into this and have Aleena tell us the answer – and well, it was a simple one. She told us that, like any artist, her work is one of a kind – the pieces that she makes will forever be the only items on the planet that exist in that form. On top of each piece being handmade, many of them feature flakes of 18K gold – which is rare in the pottery you might come across day to day.
Aleena feels she fills a gap in the pottery world in that there’s a generation that may have lost the love of collecting hand-made creations. She feels that her pottery speaks to a younger demographic that may not have otherwise found the joy that a hand-crafted item could bring them. Our moms or grandmothers might have a unique piece of pottery – but, will the millennials and beyond have the same? Aleena feels that with her work, the younger crowd has the chance to fall in love with the artform of collecting pottery.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR THREE CORNERS ARTISAN?
Good question! Aleena tells us that she’s opening a storefront on her property. We repeat. Aleena’s opening up a storefront on her property in Chilliwack. YAY(!)
HOW CAN I VISIT THREE CORNERS ARTISAN?
If you’re in the market for some hand-crafted pottery, head to Three Corners Artisan or, simply follow along with Aleena’s journey by searching her on social media (@threecornersartisan). You can also pick up one of her pieces at Montrose and George in Abbotsford!
If you’re wanting to try out pottery for yourself, Aleena hosts ladies night workshops once a month in her studio (we’re told they’re amazing – be prepared for a night of fun, a glass of wine, lots of laughs and sometimes even happy tears!) – head to her website to find out when the next one is!
If you’re looking to have Aleena visit your school and teach your class, you can contact her directly to set something up through her website.
Want to win two passes to an upcoming Three Corners Artisan Ladies Night workshop? Head to the Tourism Chilliwack Instagram (@tourismchilliwack) on February 17th to enter! Details will be listed in the Giveaway.
And, as always, be sure to tag us in your #ShareChilliwack moments!