Copyright 2013. Moonbird Pottery - Ceramics. All images and designs property of Moonbird Pottery. All rights reserved.
The Moonbird that rests on some of my ceramics pieces has had a long journey to it's clay home. When I began to teach my son how to draw birds I used to draw a bird on paper and we would tape it to a window in our home so the light would filter through it and he could place a piece of paper on top and trace it. He did this for a little while then he began to draw his own birds. He drew this great, quirky little bird with long legs that looked very similar to the moonbird you see on my pottery today. I loved the look of this bird so I decided to refine it a bit and use the design on my pottery. After the first firing I showed my son the finished product and he said,
"Mom, it looks like a moon and a bird. It's a moonbird."
So, it was settled Moonbird Pottery was born.
About a year ago at an art show someone asked me if I had head of the Sankofa bird from the Ghana tradition. I looked up the bird and it has a lot of similarities to the bird I was now drawing on clay. The Sankofa bird is an Akan word that means, "We must go back and reclaim our past so we can move forward; so we understand why and how we came to be who we are today." The symbol of Sankofa is that of a bird whose head is faced in the opposite direction of its body. This is emphasizing the fact that even though the bird is advancing, it periodically makes it a point to examine/ return to it's past, since this is the only way for one to have a better future. The egg in its mouth represents the "gems" or knowledge of the past upon which wisdom is based; it also signifies the generation to come that would benefit from that wisdom. Some also interpret Sankofa to mean, no matter how far away one travels they must always return home. However Sankofa is interpreted, the basic and important meaning still lies:
"One's past is an important aspect of one's future.
So in order to make the best of one's future, one must visit one's past."
During my time in my studio I reflect on many things. I find it very significant that the bird I draw and spend so much time with in its own quiet way expresses the journey of my heart. I am excited to carry both the Sankofa bird & the Moonbird with me as I journey forward.