Monday, July 28, 2008

The family of vases in living color

The little family has experienced a break up, due to several pieces going to good homes at the Open House this weekend. More members are in production, however. I have really enjoyed making these handbuilt pieces and they look great on their own, or filled with fresh flowers or utensils.
My friend Bobbie said they reminded her of some larger, sculptural kimono pieces that I have worked on over the years. Until she mentioned it, I really hadn't thought about it, but I do see that inspiration in these works. Funny how it takes someone else to get you to look at your work in a different light sometimes.
When working on these, I started using a different clay for some of the button attachments and the little powerhouse arms, because I wanted a contrast with the white clay. While doing the next ones, I realized I could use the blackbird slip I have been experimenting with, and just paint it over the white clay attachments. This saves me from worrying about firing two different clay bodies that mature at different temperatures together. I don't have to walk such a firing tightrope! I think that it why it is important to work in a series of pieces. You can't anticipate all the changes you will experience and experiment with in one or two pieces. I like problem solving and working things down from a complexity into a simplicity.

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