Tuesday, January 28, 2014

White Magic Sculpture

This is a sculpture with a vase like quality I made a while ago. I was experimenting with using the potter's wheel to give me some different possibilities in size and shape.
 It is a large piece, about 14' tall by 8" wide. The round shape is a complete unit that sits on its pedestal. One could put something inside if desired. I chose a white crackle glaze,with stones of real Arizona turquoise to add a bit of "magic "to this monochromatic sculpture.
It is actually a low fired piece, which makes it more decorative than functional. To get the crackle from this glaze, I put the entire piece into a primitive fire and the shock of it made the glaze go crazy. Yes, we ceramic people like to go to the outer limits whenever  possible. Isn't that part of the magic? 

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Glass Book

Here is my latest creation, "The Glass Book." The covers started out as drinking glasses. They were fired in a kiln to a high enough temperature  until they  melted flat. They measure approximately four by six inches. Although my decorative lace hides it, the bottom section is heavier, because the base is thicker and rounded.  
     This was a real technical challenge, having never done this before.I chose lace for the outer covers, because of its transparency . Choosing to put a pastel blue paper gave a dimension to this creation.A lace piece floating on the inside served as a  decorative front page. I used the long stitch style of sewing the pages right to the lace, and then gluing that right to the glass itself. Herein lay the problem.The weight of the glass  made the book move when turning the pages. This was not what I wanted. 
So I had to do what  all artists do. Take the challenge to invent a solution that looks like part of the design. I realized I had to strengthen the support system. Since my theme was white and lacy, I used additional ribbon, both thin and more decorative, to create hinges, and make a tie closure. More cut out flowered pieces made the symmetry of the front and back more pleasing.
I am happy to say it worked. Below is the finished open book. Lots of lessons when undertaking something never tried before. I am pleased with my glass book.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Art of the Birthday Cake

 What is a birthday without a cake? Here is the scrumptious start of my birthday celebration in the form of this gorgeous, homemade carrot cake. The  handmade card made it even more special. 
Birthday cakes are an old tradition, possibly dating back to the Romans and Greeks. Tradition has it that   Artemis, the Greek goddess of the hunt and the moon, would be honored by a cake with candles. Smoke was a means to get your wishes to the gods. Perhaps that led to the honored custom of making a wish and blowing out the candles to make it come true.  
Modern western tradition is attributed to the Germans, back in the 19th century. They had celebrations for the kinder, or children, and traditions of one candle for each year of the celebrant's life. The English and other Europeans adopted these habits, which made their way to the new world.
I was touched by the  efforts on my behalf. I loved the white of the icing against the chocolate of the writing. Calligraphy on cake. All of it combining to be a truly elegant presentation. Alas, it is all gone now. Only the art lives on!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Art of Reinvention

This ceramic piece is entitled " Feathered Fantasy". A rather tall, sculptural piece, it is my recent example of the art of reinvention.
Currently in show entitled " Second Chance",the premise is to reenter art that  had been formerly exhibited, but obviously not sold. I took it a step further, and changed its appearance. 
 I was pleased when I created it. I liked its aspects of  shape, form and color. I used hand building; wheel throwing; celadon green crackle glaze  in a primitive firing to create these effects.  
But, it did not sell. It resided in its tall, brown cardboard storage box , making me kind of sad that my vision had not connected with  a collector. Time to reinvent. 
I like to add adornment to my clay creations. Another dimension to the wonderful world of clay. I often  use feathers, and stones . Elements of the sky and the earth. While rifling though my large , rather messy bag with feathers, and boxes with beads in all shapes and colors, slowly, the new new form emerges.  Invention, yet another time.