Wednesday, October 31, 2007
The weather here at the dojo couldn't be nicer: mild and sunny with the sound of leaf-blowers going outside. Getting ready to do several glaze firings to ready up for the first Clay Dojo open studio, but meantimes I have jumped back into the vessel-making craze that I was in for most of the summer. These will get a matte gunmetal glaze, and are part of a large and growing series. I am getting into a bad habit of putting up pics of greenware rather than waiting to photograph the finished glazed stuff. I'll try to rectify that in November.
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Been thinking about some alternate presentations for these engraved guitar pickguards that I like making. They work fine on instruments, but it seems like the fabric background shows the imagery a little better. This one is a south seas scrimshaw theme whose figures are all taken from various Gauguin paintings.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Although it looks like we're due for a dousing of rain tomorrow, the last few days have been wonderful. I decided to revisit my idea of surface decorations outcropping from the pot. I am still noodling over what type of glaze will work best for these, but I thought I would share a few of the new shapes.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
My new favorite bookstore/cafe is McNally-Robinson on Prince St. in SoHo. I go there to browse the deluxe art publications, and because the baristas at their cafe are fantastic. This evening, I stumbled onto a poetry reading. The American Poets Project has published some great-looking volumes, and the poet Samuel Menashe, who is the winner of their first "Neglected Masters Award" wowed me with his concise and moving poems. In fact, a short, 2-line poem of his was of relevance to The Clay Dojo. It goes like this: A pot poured out / Fulfills its spout
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Stepanka is from the Czech Republic and now makes her home on the upper west side of New York City, where she makes these porcelain wall pieces, as well as wonderful functional mugs, etc. There is a whimsical, light touch and a charm to the drawing that decorates her work. It was good to have a chance to meet her at the Brookdale Crafts Show this weekend, and I hope to be in touch with her again. Her website is at: stepankaceramics.com. She is the first official Honored Guest of the Clay Dojo!
One of the first things potters learn is about bottoms: how not to make them too thin, how to compress them well so they won't crack. And I think there are others who might let themselves be tempted to hope for the best when a pot has a questionably solid bottom, as did this one. But to then go on to spend lots of time tricking out a piece with decorative elements/doodads is just nuts! Those cracks will always show up, usually just at the very end of drying, dashing all hopes and making one feel generally foolish. So, before chucking it in the slop bucket for reclaim, I thought I would take a picture, as a little reminder against wishful thinking. Adios, amigo.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Almost everyone in nyc knows how amazing this place is. I realized it had been way too long since my last visit, so I took a trip for the first saturday in October. It is free to the public and stays open until 11pm every first sat. Here's a glimpse at what you might see there.