Friday, July 30, 2010


I glazed up and fired off a group of pots last week. The bulk of the kiln was utilitarian plates, serving bowls and the like. However with each group of pots for the kiln, I like to put several tests and new ideas or oddball techniques I have been working on, into the kiln. This usually means smaller pieces, small bottles, vases or teabowls.
I have always loved the works of the abstract expressionists and the spontaneous ink of the Zen calligraphers . Their use of space and line is so perfect, honest and appropriate. So every once and a while, I make some pots that borrow from these idioms. I try to work fast, spontaneously while being conscious of the form. Obviously, some work, some don’t, but the real enjoyment is at the moment you put pigment to pot.
A long while ago, I saw a demo for using a crinkly spring used to “facet” with. After seeing the demo, I took an old cheese cutter and converted it to accept the crinkly spring as its new wire. I have played with the wonderful textures possible from this technique on and off for a good long while. I recently threw a few large teabowls and had at them with the magic cheese cutter. I glazed them up in temmoku and haiyu and ended up with some nice surfaces. It is always nice to pull some oddballs out of the kiln!

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