Shirley Brauker vividly recalls sitting in a puddle as a young child, waiting for her older sister to return home from school on the bus. As her little hands explored the wet mud, she found herself sculpting an Indian village in the middle of her driveway. She’s been an artist her entire life.
Throughout her childhood, Shirley explored many different types of art, from drawing and painting to sewing and crafts, but when she walked into her first pottery class at Central Michigan University, she says it felt like coming home. She graduated from CMU with both a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master of Arts degree. It was in the studios there that MoonBear Pottery was born.
Each of Shirley’s pieces is a unique and beautiful interpretation of her Native American heritage, and each piece has its own story to tell. A butterfly speaks of transformation; a bear promises strength and introspection. Her work has evolved throughout her career and includes hand carved stoneware pottery, raku fired pottery, bronze art, drawings and paintings. She’s also a published author, an occasional art teacher, a lecturer, and much more.
Recently, Shirley was commissioned to create a carved tile mural that is now on display at Walt Disney World Resorts. She will also present a commencement speech at Central Michigan University for the 2015 December graduating class.
Visit Shirley at Art-A-Licious this year where she will have her hand carved pottery for sale. She is also one of our demonstrating artists, so be sure to stop by and see her practicing her craft in Downtown Adrian!