Bear Shiell

  • Ceramics
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Pottery
  • Sculpture

My creative themes are interconnection with nature- through landscapes & seascapes, Birthing - creativity. My family ancestory - its different cultural and racial origins and how denial of colour allowed my ancestors opportunities.

Studio Details

ART with HEART Studio (in the Historic restored Old Darnelles store Witchcliffe -in the post office left side front door).
3 Redgate Road

Opening Hours

  • Sat 9 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Sun 10 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Mon 11 SeptBy appointment
  • Tue 12 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Wed 13 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Thu 14 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Fri 15 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Sat 16 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Sun 17 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Mon 18 SeptBy appointment
  • Tue 19 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Wed 20 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Thu 21 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Fri 22 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Sat 23 Sept10am - 4pm
  • Sun 24 Sept10am - 4pm

ART with HEART Studio (Fine art, & formally trained Ceramic sculptor/ studio ceramicist) is found through the single front door on the west (left) side of this recently renovated historic building. (there are 3 front doors). Wheel chair accessible.

  • Parking suitable for cars
  • Parking suitable for buses
  • Universal access
  • Family friendly (suitable for children)

Jo ‘Bear’ Shiell
I have always painted and drawn, and through my diploma of art and design- Studio Ceramics in the 90s. This TAFE training enriched and broadened my skills, knowledge and creative development with my pottery, sculptural and fine art training.
Through my life as a constantly exploring artist, I have explored further and am proficient in working and teaching skills required to express ones-self through, including Ceramics both wheel and hand-built forms, Drawing, Painting and Sculpture.
My Artwork; The mediums I use within my sculptures are mainly clay/ceramic, mixed at times with wrought iron, Perspex, glass, wood, wire and materials from nature.
There are 5 themes that I return to as an artist. They are areas that I find rich with possibility and that I have a passion for. 1. Family and cultural identity. mixed media 2. Commonality of the human life- our inner worlds of mind, emotion, body and clarity. (painting series - acrylic on canvas) 3. The Earth / Land and its mystery, interconnectedness, and spirit. Ceramic sculptures and functional ware. 4. Birthing & childbearing. As an Ceramic Artist Nurse & Midwife this sculptural series combine it all. 5. The Stars and beyond -
1. Family, skin colour & cultural diversity in my own family. I specifically look at the historically social definer of skin colour and cultural identity. In an Australian society where being white meant education and opportunity many cross-cultural descendents identified with the colour/culture which would make life easiest for their children. My father’s family story writes….. Although many descendants of William & Hannah Shiell were of dark complexion this characteristic has become much less noticeable with the 5th and subsequent generations. The origins of this genetic trait are unknown…the post-war era ( In Australia) where the influx of southern European migrants has made the residual Shiell characteristics look quite unobtrusive in a society where once they were quite distinctive. The Story of a Shiell Family by D Anderson & R. Shiell. My series ‘Ancestral Colours’ reflect this theme. (Ceramic and glass/wrought iron) period. wire or wrought Iron is used as a symbol of the threads.. the continuity of characteristics that run through our families heritage, the ceramic form displays the real & perceived colour of skin expressed as marbled clay and slip.
I love sharing Art & run weekly classes from my studio.


Drawing with Chalk pastels - (either @ ART with HEART studio or in nature)

Book online

Clay Day - Handbuilding - make your own inside or courtyard pot plant.

Book online

A Clay PLAY - be shown wheel skills and have a go. yes mud flys, but people giggle

Book online