A friend let me use his soda kiln to fire my work last weekend. Here is the open kiln as I saw it a couple days after the firing. The firing was a little cold, but I learned alot from it and hope to use many of the pieces in my shows this coming spring.
What I learned the most was how my glazes work in soda. Some did not turn out how I wanted them to, but some came out great. My core 3 glazes looked great and I can’t wait to use them again. there were maybe three other test glazes that I will mix up again. Also, there were several glazes that did not work and I hope to sieve them to get the materials to mix better in the firing and perhaps work next time.
I’m looking forward to firing soda again, though I dont’ know when that will be, but I hope to do some tests again soon to see if sieving a glaze will improve how it looks.
The images are from the Freer/Renwick Galleries on 2 separate occasions in September 2019. I have seen the pieces in the Freer a million times as it is my favorite museum, but this is only the second time I’ve been to the Renwick. Both have amazing pieces that I have not photographed or seen deep in their archives. I wish they would rotate their collections more often.
Chance led me to the Renwick Gallery in Washington DC this week where I went through the exhibit of Michael Sherrill’s work. It was amazing. He has moved his focus from utilitarian work thrown on a wheel to ceramic, metal, glass sculptural pieces. All were done with explicit detail and professional appearance. In speaking with him he was modest, contemplative and completely involved in his creative ideas.
I visited the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC this weekend and had a great time looking at the artwork. I only spent an hour there and another one in the Hirshhorn and though, I enjoyed every minute of it, it wasn’t enough time to see and admire all the art work I wanted to check out.
Recently, I have been interested and researching Dadaism and Surrealism and found great works of art representing both of these artistic periods. I pictured a few of them in this article, but there were 2 Max Ernst works that I am very interested in. they are in fact, stuck in my head right now. His work is distubing, but amazing at the same time.
December 1 &2 I was the guest artist at Pocahontas State Park. The current CCC Museum was once a craft building built for the community to make arts and crafts in 1939. A wood kiln was built as well on the grounds to support pottery making.
Each day I threw pottery and did a hand built workshop where the students made pinch pots and worked on different techniques such as rolling coils, attaching slabs, creating textures and making handles for cups.
The rangers did clay workshops with children and built a fire near the kiln. The made smores in the afternoon and talked to people walking or hiking by.
The weather was overcast, but being in the woods and making pottery outside was very cool.
I enjoyed all the volunteers that helped out and the park rangers who participated in making the event a success.
Maybe, next time the weather will be nicer and there will be more people. Either way I would love to work there again. What a great time.
Last weekend I fired twice getting out several plates for a dinnerware order. Pictured here are the ones I have not sold. I did several Virginia native wildflower designs as well as geometric and Eastern songbird designs. I really liked working on them.
Each style is working for me, but I like to change them a bit each time I do them to (in my mind) make them better or maybe, just to tickle my mood.
I drove up to Philadelphia, PA to see The Clay Studio and the Barnes Foundation Collection because my friend Leigh is turning 50 years old and I wanted to be at her party.
The entire weekend was amazing. First I went to The Clay Studio in the Old City part of Philadelphia and spoke to the shop director Dominique Ellis. I don’t know if I’ll get my work in there, but it was a great space in a cool part of town.
Dominique went to UNL which is where I went to Grad School, so it was cool talking about old friends and places.
While waiting for for The Clay Studio to open, I ran over to see the Liberty Bell which is around 7 blocks away. That was cool too.
Next I went to the Barnes Foundation. What an amazing collection of Impressionistic art.
Let me say, it is pathetic that they broke Barnes’ will, but this collection is so worth going to see. I would have loved to see it where it is supposed to be, but I’m guessing that the light is much better now which allowed for the images you see here. The old mansion it was in was renowned for dark lit rooms.
Anyway, some of my favorite all time paintings were there. Included are just a few of the amazing artworks up on the walls.
This article isn’t right without a Modigliani painting. So here was my favorite.