Janet Keefe

Introduced to the visual arts in high school in England, Janet was immediately at home working in three dimensions.  During the 1960s, she spent two years at Epsom College of Art & Design, and a year in Paris, France, studying pottery, drawing and sculpture in private studios.

Then, changing direction, she trained and worked as an Occupational Therapist. During the 1970s she married a Marine Engineer, with whom she was able to travel the world by sea. In the 1980s they, and their two daughters, emigrated to Canada and have since lived and worked in Newfoundland and Eastern Ontario.

Unable to stay away from clay, she made garden pots in her studio in Kent, England and wheel thrown functional ware in St. John’s.  Coiling became her preferred method of pot construction coincidentally with a workshop in Raku firing in the late 1980s. The compatibility of these techniques, combined with her sense of form and surface were the foundations of her work until 2012.  In 2013 Janet was chosen to participate in Fusion's Ottawa Mentorship Program with Leta Cormier.  As a result of experimenting during this Program, Janet  started using dry matt surfaces fired at cone 6 in oxidation.  At present she is refining the use of these organic surfaces, developing greater abstractions of form, and exploring smoke firing techniques.


  • Epsom College of Art & Design, England: 1967/68 and 69/70
  • Private Studios and teachers in Ceramics, Drawing and Sculpture, Paris, France 1968/69
  • Summer School courses with Michael Sheba, Chris Thompson, Leta Cormier, and Lyse Fleury
  • Workshops with Lynn Studham, John Eden, Debbie Black, Dannon Rhudy, Audrey Killoran, and Dan Hill
  • Fusion Mentorship Program (Ottawa, 2013) with Leta Cormier. Program culminated with an exhibition entitled "Transitions" at the Shenkman Centre (January 2014)
  • Studied Ikebana (Sogetsu School) with Toyoko Ogura Marshall from 2001 to 2013, and Anne Breau (Riji) since 2014

exhibitions & achievements

  • Participant in every Thanksgiving Pottery Sale at Marlin Orchards (Cornwall, Ontario) since 1986
  • Atrium Gallery, Centrepoint, Nepean, Ottawa, 1991 Solo Artist Show.
  • Massena Artists’ Association, New York, USA, 1992 Work selected for juried exhibition. Awarded prize for best sculpture
  • Gallery Collections, Windsor, Ontario, 1996 “Earthworks” Joint exhibit with painter Joan Earle
  • Slanted Floor Gallery, Martintown, Ontario, 1997. “Counterbalance” Joint exhibit with painter Esther Bryan
  • Fusion’s “Fireworks”, 1998 and 2000 Selected work for the bi-annual juried traveling exhibition
  • Abbey for the Arts, Glen Nevis, Ontario, 2007 “Painter Potter Painter” with Gerald Swift and Joan Owen
  • Abbey for the Arts, Glen Nevis, Ontario, 2008 “Hands to Earth” with collage artist Renée Levesque
  • Juried Sales: “1001 Pots”, Val David, Quebec, 1999-2001, 2003-2004, 2006-2007 2009
  • Member of Farfelu Co-operative Gallery, Westmount, Montreal   2003- 2010
  • Participant in "Transitions" exhibition featuring the works created during the Fusion Mentorship Program (Shenkman Centre, Orleans, January 2014)
  • Winner of the Craft Ontario award at the Ottawa Guild of Potters juried spring show, 2015
  • Awarded Best In Show at the Ottawa Guild of Potters juried spring show, 2016


  • Participant in Ikebana International Ottawa Centennial Chapter’s Spring Exhibition at the Museum of Nature, Ottawa 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012 and 2014.
  • Achieved Teachers Level 4 Accreditation from Sogetsu Headquarters in Tokyo, Japan in 2012.