Beatrice hand builds her pottery using the coil and slab method, and is renowned for her mythological face masks. Beginning with the clay, the earth element, and ending with the fire element, the piece is complete with the connections to the universe.
My Native American/ Mexican roots have emerged in my pottery and ceramics. The joy I feel as my hands create with the clay must have connections to my ancestors. I am enamored with the piece as it unfolds and I rarely know beforehand what I want it to look like. It evolves as the clay and I create together.
Beatrice uses three primary processes to finish her piece: smolderfire, raku or horsehair. Her work has won numerous prizes including a First Place and Judge’s Award in the 2005 Art in the Redwoods. Besides her three previous successful gallery shows in Gualala, CA, she has had showings from Sea Ranch Lodge to Point Arena, where she is a member of the Coast Highway Artists Collective. She helped curate last year’s Artists Collective show that featured local Native American artists. Her artistic journey began in 2000 at Kaye Like’s Brandybuck Ranch Pottery Studio and she also has taken classes at the Mendocino Art Center.
In the past her horsehair technique has been applied to burnished white clay,which is then polished to high sheen, creating a marbelized effect. Acosta has been exploring a new primer called “terra sigillata” that she formulates. Finishing the piece requires application of between four and twenty layers of a very thin slip, each layer of which is hand buffed. By altering the primer formula, producing either a white terra sig or a red terra sig, Acosta can produce a variety of effects. After the greenware firing, she proceeds to Sagger fire the white terra sig pieces using seaweeds, various salts, copper, and even Miracle-Gro. She may also embed horsehair in the red terra sigillata piece after the initial firing which creates an etheral finish.
Acosta also employs the use of smolder firing for her Navajo red pieces. This method results in distinctive smoke cloud designs fixed on the finish.
Bea has incorporated pine needles in her pottery as a basket weaver. Using pine needles, waxed threads, beads and other found materials, she now makes baskets of all sizes independent of the pottery. Some baskets are intended to be functional while others serve as art.