Bonnie Waletzko

Willow River Pottery

Bonnie's Studio

"Since our mind is in itself unable to behold God as he is, it knows the Father of the universe from the beauty of his works and from the elegance of his creatures."

Origen A.D. 225

"Creating an object decorated with images which reminds me of God's great earthly gifts brings me great joy; when that object does the same for someone else, it has fulfilled its purpose."

Bonnie Waletzko


Willow River Pottery was established in the mid-1970's when Bonnie Waletzko started hand-building sculptural works with a red stoneware clay body. By 1979 she had added a white stoneware clay body and a potter's wheel--producing a line of functional ware which evolved into one-of-a-kind art vases with a wide range of form and surface design including geometric, plant, and animal imagery.

In 1987 a studio was built on the Waletzko farm, 5 1/2 miles east of Willow River, Minnesota, when the small kiln and house basement space had become too confining. With the new studio, a two-story basement-barn style structure, a new kiln accomodating four foot tall pieces, and with an enhanced adventurous spirit, the sky became the limit for Bonnie.

Influenced by her brother's colorful paintings, she added hundreds of glaze and underglaze colors to the earthtones she had been using, replaced the stoneware clay bodies with a white earthenware body which allowed for multiple firings of over 2000*F on the pottery.

The stage was set for very large art pieces, achieved by the thrown and coiled method, an oriental technique. The smooth surface of the pieces allows for time-consuming intricate design work--etchings and carvings. Lusters and 24K gold spark the finishing touch on some works.

The award-winning Waletzko signed and dated pottery can be found in collections world-wide. Presently Bonnie's work is shown in Lizzard's Gallery in Duluth, Minnesota as well as at her Willow River Pottery showroom.

 
On County Rd. 43 go 4.0 miles west of Bruno or 5.5 miles east of Willow River to #40679
 

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