getting a little more work done…

some pics of the previously mentioned work.  new sculpture, and new blue wall peices.

the idea with these new pieces is for them to go on the walls.  i’m embarking on a kind of challenge, figuring out how i would like to finish these.  so i’m looking at everything as a test right now, not knowing if anything will come out well.  i did some tests with raw materials, trying to keep the surface and the substance closer to each other, and playing with the color clay is the same idea.  trying to avoid putting a layer of surface over the whole thing.  i GUESS that soda firing amounts to the same thing, a layer of surface treatment on top of raw clay, but i feel that the interaction of the soda, fire, clay and carbon means it’s more of an extenstion of the clay surface vs. a covering of the clay.

with awesome guidence from g.m. i’m looking at artists and doing some reading in a more studious way then the last few years and right now, form wise, i’m really interested in ron nagle, ken price and especially kathy butterly.  of course their surfaces are amazing as well, but i love the forms.  BUT they all treat the form so intensely with surface, and there is this idea that they are 3d paintings.

i’m really intrigued by the work i’m seeing both in person in philly (super great art town and gearing up for nceca with a plethora of clay exhibitions) and in research, and trying to figure out what kind of inspiration i can take from all this to push my own work forward.  definitely moving along at turle pace right now, but i’m not worried.

more snow excitement

ok, so no more snow days.  actually the weird thing is that there has been a lot more snowing at times when i’m out and about but it’s not sticking so not causing such a problem with the transit.  there were a couple of days where i was getting poked in the eyes with snowflakes as i walked around.  so odd for a floridian like me.

i was in tokyo for almost a year before the first snow and i don’t remember it ever really snowing like this.  there were FOR SURE never piles of snow on the ground for weeks on end.  i feel like a little kid, scraping snow off cars to make snowballs and pulling out my camera at all kinds of banal sights.

the snow on the trees reminds me of the cherry blossoms in tokyo, sometimes they were white instead of pink and the light color of the blossom made the tree bark look like charcoal, which was especially beautiful.  i have only been here in winter so maybe these trees will end up being cherry blossom trees in the spring?  that would be sweet.

and up close the black and white of the bark and ice make a nice pattern:

i’m also really interested in the icicles.  i don’t always remember to look up and see them but the other day on the way out see an exhibition at the crane arts building i spotted these bumpy, melty looking icicles.


i put some finishing touches on my first sculpture.  coiled a bit on a second larger sculpture.   last week i mixed up a batch of porcelain and stirred in a blue mason stain to a portion of it.  today i made a couple of wall peices out of it.  i also sprayed some test tiles.  just testing some raw materials: custer feldspar, nepheline syenite and gerstley borate in the baby kiln.

i’m excited to see what they look like and to put some tests of the blue porcelain in but tomorrow is shaping up to be another snow day.  ehhhh…..all this snow.

well, i’ll post some more pictures later this week or next.:-)

what i learned from iman.

what do i love more than project runway?  project runway canada.

i would love to have iman come into my studio and give me a critique.  she doesn’t care if you’ve never sewn a suit before, she doesn’t care what your client wanted.  you’ve got to step up and deliver or get going.

here’s what i learned from project runway canada:

1. you succeed or don’t.  don’t be a baby.

2.  be a gracious winner.  be a gracious loser.

3.  stay focused.

4.  be flexible, but don’t lose your aesthetic voice.

5.  manage your time well.

talking about working

well, the big challenge of my new studio life is all this talking.  for me, talking, speculation, thinking out loud, comes naturally.  but i usually just try to keep my mouth shut when it comes to my work.  on the one hand, i’m not so confident talking about my work.  on the other, i do think there is a bit of fantasy in my work and i don’t want to give people words to hinge their interpretation on.

it’s about nature, and the nature of things.  ehhhhhh, blehh.

maybe this is something i should continue writing about.  we’ll see.  anyway, here are some shots red sent me of the shot glasses i made for the anagama firing before leaving florida.  hopefully soon i’ll get to post shots of all the lovely shot glasses i receive!

thanks red, for the sweet shots!

snow day in the city.

got a call at 6 am.  no public transit so no work today.  snow day!  first one ever.  i casually moved up to the delaware valley just in time to experience philadelphia’s 2nd most snowfall ever.  yay!

it was scheduled to start snowing by 4 pm yesterday.  by the time i got off work, still no snow.  when i got downtown for the first friday gallery walk i caught a few flakes coming out of the sky.  by the time i was heading home there were a couple of inches on the ground and it was still coming down.  yikes. it snowed all night and this morning.

great day.

it’s really weird not living 8 blocks from the studio.  i start my job (reproductive health clinic) tomorrow and my schedule is going to be something like thurs-sat.  so once i finished up some wall pieces and the sculpture i posted a pic of yesterday, i realized there wasn’t much point in starting anything else.  once i get accustomed to these train schedules (and it’s not so death-by-hypothermia cold) i might be able to swing nightly visits to the studio but for the time being i think my best bet might be to work on pieces start-to-finish sunday through wednesday.

today i went with new friend m.d. to visit a very well known local sculptor.  i’ll be working with her a few days in the next months prepping/installing work before and after NCECA.  her studio was beautiful.  seeing her work in person (in the gallery) and in different stages of completion (in the studio) was breathtaking.  her husband is also a well established sculptor and it was really inspiring to meet them both.  they were super friendly and chatty and asked lots of questions, which of course i kind of geeked out while answering.  (i.e. way too long description of the japanese alphabets…….) when i really would have like to hear more about them and their journey to where they are now.  hmmmm, well moving forward, i hope to get a little more insight.

getting shit done.

it’s true, getting adjusted to a new space kind of sucks.  you don’t know where anything is, perhaps like me you didn’t get to bring all your favorite blue plastic and chunks of old foam mattresses.  anyway, the point is i feel all awkward in a studio at the beginning.  oh, and the clay situation is different (as it turns out better) BUT then i finally just dig in and make something.  something that i’m excited about and then i remember why i’m there.

i mean, nothing beats that feeling of satisfaction.  i don’t know if it’s just having brought to fruition this image from inside of you or the point when you start to get totally warmed up and loose and the clay and your hands kind of start to do their own thing but it’s good stuff.

anyway, here’s a pic from my phone.  i’ll post some later today when it’s finished.