Michael Flaherty









January 11 2017

I'm lucky to have been invited to be Artist-in-Residence for a month at Medalta International Ceramic Art Centre in Medicine Hat, AB. I'll be here for the entire month of January and working on some new sculptures for an upcoming show at the Esplanade Gallery.

April 30 2016

First firing of the new wood kiln!

August 25 2015

I've started someting new: I've opened a pottery studio called Wild Cove Ceramics in Catalina, NL. I'll be making functional pottery fired in an electric kiln, and wood-fired pottery in brand new kiln that I've built. It's gonna be a fun time!

January 2 2015

Please join me at the Mary E Black Gallery in Halifax for my exhibition The Grey Islands January 9 to February 22. An opening reception will be held on January 8 at 7pm.

June 15 2014

I am happy to say that I have been invited to be the first Guest Artist at the Quidi Vidi Village Plantation, a position which runs for the months of June and July. This means that I will be working in the studio as well as doing a public artist talk and helping the Plantation define a direction for future Guest Artists and Artists-in-Residence.

Come on down to the Plantation for a look around and to say hello!

September 13 2013

I am honoured to be one of five finalists for this prestigious award. The winner is chose by popular vote, and you can cast your vote either at the gallery, or online by going here.

And some images of my work from the competition...

July 31 2013

I've been working on a new project called Shards where I've basically been traveling around Newfoundland and building temporary sculptures out of the pottery shards I'm finding on the beaches. There will eventually be a few images on this site, but I've also been keeping a blog for the project where you can see lots of images and writing. Check it out here.

April 15 2013

The Confederation Centre of the Arts produced this amazing video about my recent exhibition The Grey Islands. Have a look!

Michael Flaherty: The Grey Islands from Confederation Centre of the Arts on Vimeo.

January 13 2013

Some wood-fired pots from the kiln at Red Deer College.

July 14 2012

Michael Flaherty: The Grey Islands

Please join me for the opening reception of my exhibition Michael Flaherty: The Grey Islands at the Confederation Centre for the Arts, on Thursday August 4 at 7pm. The exhibition will feature sculptures, videos, photos and other works resulting from my time on the isolated Grey Islands on the north coast of Newfoundland. The exhibition runs from August 4 to December 23.

January 15 2012

Rangifer Sapiens

Please join me for the opening reception of my exhibition Rangifer Sapiens at the Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador, on Saturday February 4 at 2pm. The exhibition will feature sculptures inspired by my sojourn on the isolated Grey Islands on the north coast of Newfoundland. The exhibition runs from February 4 to March 11. For details about the exhibition visit the Craft Council Gallery, and to learn more about the art click here.

November 15 2011

Rangifer Sapiens

Here are a couple images of new work I just pulled from the kiln for my upcoming exhibition Rangifer Sapiens. The show opens in February of next year, which is three months away but coming up fast nonetheless. I will post the details about dates and location before long, but for now I just wanted to post some teaser photos.

July 12 2011

New Work

I just pulled a piece out of the kiln that I thought I should post on here. It's the first of a new body of work that I'm doing for a show at the Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador next winter. The works in the show are going to be sculptures combining caribou antlers and pottery shards, and experimenting with or swapping the surfaces on those two objects. In this piece the antler is decorated like blue and white pottery, while the tea cup is made to look weathered like an old antler. I don't think I've pulled it all together yet, but this is the idea of where I'm going. I should also mention that while antlers and pottery shards are objects that I've found during my adventures on the Grey Islands these sculptures are entirely fabricated from a low fire white earthenware clay. Yes, I've been making pottery and breaking it to use in these sculptures, and I've had to teach myself how to make the long spindly antlers out of a material that really doesn't like to be treated in that way. It's been a challenge for sure.

June 23 2011

New Pottery

I don't exactly make a ton of pottery, but I do enjoy it so I often look for excuses to get myself at the wheel. This time around I'm testing a local clay that I've been digging by making pottery with it. This clay is not too far away, just across the bay, and I can go over there and dig as much as I want. I've taken my class there, and several of my students have gotten quite into using this material. It's a typical terra cotta clay, but as I've never used a native clay before I'm pretty excited about it. It's a very pure, fine grained, medium plasticity clay that can actually be used for sculpture straight out of the ground. For use on the wheel I process it minimally - I dry it out completely, then slake it down into a slip, and then pass it through an 80 mesh sieve to remove the lumps and organic material. Then I just dry it out to the right consistency and put it straight on the wheel. Here are a couple pieces that I've made out of the clay:

I've also tried a few slips, glazes and terra sigillatas with this clay, but I don't have too much to report in that regard yet.

June 23 2011

Two Projects From My Class

This spring I've been teaching a course at the Grenfell called VART 3500 Combined Media in Ceramic Sculpture. We've got two projects from this class on public display. The first, Ceramics and Social Engagement, is an exercise in pottery, intervention and social media - you can see the blog for the project at http://ceramicsandsocialengagement.blogspot.com. The second, a display decorated pottery can be seen at the Ferris Hodgett Library at Grenfell:

The Albarello is a pottery form common to the Mediterranean region from the Middle Ages to the early modern period. Most commonly used by apothecaries as drug jars, they were also used for many other mercantile purposes. The distinctive concave sides are an ergonomic feature that enable a jar to be easily taken off of a crowded shelf.

June 22 2011


From The Independent

May 1 2011

Two Shows

See my work in two shows currently happening in St. John's - Patrick: A Celebration at the Arts and Culture Centre and Blue at the Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador. Patrick is an exhibition of figure studies of Patrick Brown, a model who has worked with many artists in St. John's over the years. I have two pieces in the show, one small clay figure I laboured over for weeks, and another huge lifesize figure I made in twenty-four hours during the Eastern Edge Art Marathon. Both these pieces come from around 2003 or 2004. In the Blue exhibition I have a new earthenware bowl. This is the first time I've exhibited a piece of pottery in many years.

April 20 2011

Sobey Art Award Long List

April 15, 2011 - HALIFAX, NS - The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and the Sobey Art Foundation are pleased to announce the long list for the 2011 Sobey Art Award, Canada�s pre-eminent prize for contemporary Canadian art. Following a three-month nomination process, the Curatorial Panel has announced the 25 artists vying for this year�s Award.

"The Sobey Art Award offers a wonderful opportunity for dialogue about the currents in Canadian contemporary Art. From the diversity of practice and place in this year�s longlist we can see how vibrant Canada�s arts community truly is."

- Sarah Fillmore, Chief Curator, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and Curator, Sobey Art Award.

The 2011 Long List

Zeke Moores
Kym Greeley
John Haney
Michael Flaherty
Becka Viau

J�r�me Havre
Chris Kline
Emanuel Licha
Nadia Myre
Manon De Pauw

Aleesa Cohene
Christian Giroux and Daniel Young
Derek Sullivan
Gareth Long
Josh Thorpe

Prairies and the North:
Denton Fredrickson
Sarah Anne Johnson
Dave and Jenn
Wally Dion
Dominique Rey

West Coast:
Sonja Ahlers
James Nizam
Helen Reed
Charles Stankievech
Joseph Tisiga

The shortlist for the 2011 Sobey Art Award will be announced in May 2011. Selected work by the shortlisted artists will be featured in an exhibition at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, on view from September, 17 2011 to January 8, 2012. The winner will be announced during a Gala event at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia on October 13, 2011.

The 2011 Sobey Art Award Curatorial Panel consists of:
Bruce Johnson, Curator at the Rooms Provincial Art Gallery
Ga�tane Verna, Director and Chief Curator, Mus�e d'art de Joliette
Marnie Fleming, Curator of Contemporary Art, Oakville Art Galleries
Ryan Doherty, Curator, Southern Alberta Art Gallery
Mary Bradshaw, Gallery Director, Yukon Arts Centre�

About The Sobey Art Award

The Sobey Art Award, Canada�s pre-eminent award for contemporary Canadian art, was created in 2002 by the Sobey Art Foundation. It is an annual prize given to an artist under 40 who has exhibited in a public or commercial art gallery within 18 months of being nominated. A total of $70,000 in prize money is awarded annually; $50,000 to the winner and $5,000 to the other four finalists. Since its inception, the Sobey Art Award and accompanying exhibition have been organized and administered by the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.

April 1 2011

Glaze Calculator

I just finished work on the first version of a glaze calculation spreadsheet. In case this may be of interest to you other technical nerds out there I'm posting it here (Glaze Calculator) for you to download. If you'd like to comment or complain about it just shoot me an email at ceramicfundamentalist@yahoo.com

February 10 2011

Website Renovations!

If you've been here before you may notice a slightly different look and updated content. If you've never been here before you may still notice inconsistent formatting and a few other issues. I'm currently working on a major content update and a minor design update which I hope to have completed in the next couple weeks. This update will make it possible to access all my media from one page, and it will integrate my Grey Islands and Bicycle Rehabilitation Project online resources more seamlessly. At least that is the idea. Check back soon to see this website at its best.

January 15 2011

Visiting Artist: Jim Smith

January 20-21 2011

Grenfell Campus welcomes artist Jim Smith for a two-day workshop including studio demonstrations and lectures. Participants welcome, contact Mike Flaherty for details: mflaherty@swgc.mun.ca

November 11 2010

Exhibition: Mixer
Nov 13 2010 to Jan 8 2011
Opening Reception Saturday Nov 13 2010 7-9pm

Grenfell Art Gallery presents Mixer, an exhibition of the faculty and staff of the Visual Arts Program at Memorial Univeristy of Newfoundland - Grenfell Campus. Exhibiting artists include Maggie Atkinson, Bruce Bryne, Michael Coyne, Gerard Curtis, Michael Flaherty, Don Foulds, John Graham, Shirley Greer, Matthew Hollett, Barb Hunt, Charlotte Jones, Kent Jones, Pierre LeBlanc, Marlene MacCallum, George Maslov, David Moorish, Ingrid Percy, Chris Short.