Natalie Waddell is a Toronto based ceramic artist. A student of the Sheridan College Ceramic Craft and Design program (2003) she has continued her studies by attending workshops lead by local and international ceramic artists and educators.
Since establishing her studio practice Natalie has continuously explored and developed new bodies of functional and sculptural work as well as teaches classes and workshops. She is an active member of the Akin Artist Collective, the Toronto Potters Association, the Potters Guild of Hamilton and Region, FUSION: Ontario Clay and Glass Association and NCECA - the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts and Craft Ontario.
Valentina’s relationship with Mexico is like that of the Monarch butterflies; having a home in two places. She moved from Toluca, Mexico to Montreal over a decade ago, however she still maintains a deep connection to her Mexican roots. While earning her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Concordia University (2006) in Montreal, it was in the streets of Toluca that Valentina developed her passion for the visual arts.
Specializing in ceramics and in painting, she enjoys the soothing feel of clay between her hands. The changes to the medium throughout the sculpting and firing processes create a visceral connection to her work. After feeding her passion for ceramics at Concordia University, Valentina went on to further develop her skills while working at Mosaika Art and Design. Traditional Asian floral patterns are incorporated into her ceramic work; its simple elegance lends to the medium.
After living for 15 years in Montreal and more than 9 years doing ceramics in public art, Valentina decided to move to Toronto to work on her passions in a fresh new environment. With excitement, she is discovering the art scene and finding her place within a new city. Thinking of the monarch, she reminisces of her first heart and home, Mexico. She still thinks of her inspirations of Mexican painters Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Maria Izquierdo, amongst others. Valentina’s paintings often incorporate floral designs, and she names Georgia O’Keeffe and Tina Modotti also as main influences.