Leia-Rae Belcourt is the owner and in-house potter at Dog Patch Pottery. Leia was born in the Kootenays, raised in Ontario and Saskatchewan, but eventually found her way back to the Kootenays settling into life on the East Shore of Kootenay Lake.
Leia enrolled in the night class pottery program at Kootenay School of the Arts in 1999, learned the basics of the craft from ceramicist Christine Dell, and has largely been self-taught since then. Pottery quickly became an obsession and Dog Patch Pottery was opened in the spring of 2001.
Leia is known for her ornately decorated functional pottery, but also makes a selection of pottery that is simple, focusing on form and function. Leia’s pottery invokes a sense of peacefulness, calm, and comfort. She approaches making pottery as well as the running of her business as a practice of meditation in action and draws inspiration from her time in nature observing plants, animals, and the elements. She is inspired by the Arts and Crafts movement and believes in the value of homemade products and craftsmanship which stresses the inherent beauty of the material, and the value of simplicity, unity, and art.
Leia is passionate about promoting arts and culture and has always welcomed the work of other potters into her gallery. Dog Patch Pottery has become well recognized in the region as a great place to find a vast selection of pottery and art.
When she isn’t at the potter’s wheel, Leia loves to get out in nature and pursue other avenues of creative expression and learning. You can find her hiking, mountain biking, painting, dabbing in theatre and music projects, telling bad jokes, gardening, teaching yoga, studying primatology, and enjoying the company of all creatures great and small.