I think I have always cast a pretty wide net in terms of my exploration of clay. Pots and the vessel have held the center but there has been a strong overlay of interest in drawing, color and leaving a trace of the hand.
I navigate both the clay and drawing with an emphasis on “touch” and a felt response to the materials and to my own inner rhythms and sensibilities. I am guided by a dialogue with the work and find myself in agreement when it speaks in a voice that has commitment and conviction, but also the allure of mystery and enigma. I am always most pleased when the work strikes a balance between wildness and restraint.
Vessels are a significant emphasis for me, pots being my constant companions for the past 50 years. Forms include large jars, compressed cylinders, bowls, teapots and cups. Surface activation plays a major role in all these vessels, but the drawing and painting are given the greatest freedom in the large ceramic wall tiles that I have worked with for many years. These pieces are all painted with polychrome engobes.
Through all this work I am most interested in distinguishing the record/moment of the hand touching clay and the actual quality of feeling surrounding the work.
- Earthenware Ceramic. For these pieces I use a red earthenware clay, white slip, colored engobes and a clear glaze. The emphasis of this work is color, line and imagery. Work is fired to cone 03.
Speedball Underglazes. I use the Speedball Underglazes in a wide range of thicknesses, from as thick as they come out of the jar to quite watered down to create translucent layered effects of color. They bond very well with the leather hard clay and white slip that I apply them to and so I can forget about technical problems and focus on my drawing. Speedball Underglazes are a great way to incorporate color into ceramic art work and they are also an incredible color value!
The Painted Pot, October 9-10, 2021
Art Alliance of Greensboro, Greensboro, NC
A hands-on workshop exploring a range of approaches to drawing and painting on clay utilizing earthenware clay, white slip and Speedball Underglazes.