Theme: Challenging Techniques

We’re starting off the New Year with a few challenging techniques you can really sink your teeth into (yuck! now that would leave a bad taste in your mouth!). On the cover of this issue we feature Hiroe Hanazono and her wonderful double-walled cast vessels. And though it’s freezing cold out there right now (in our neck of the woods anyway) her ice cream sundae set will be the perfect thing for the summer—you just have to get started soon because the process is involved. Another challenging technique in this issue, called zogan yusai, comes from Mashiko potter Fumiya Mukoyama. Montana artist Lauren Sandler then demonstrates a slab and coil building method using a leather-hard mold form then applying terra sigillata to convey complex images. And finally, Michelle Erickson has reverse engineered an historic technique for throwing agateware. You’ll find this and much more in our first issue of the year . . . read on!


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Casting Party
by Hiroe Hanazono

Hiroe has always had a great passion for food and that’s why she makes functional pots. She’s especially fascinated with design that’s clean and almost severe in its simplicity and her work shows it. She leads you through a great step-by-step technique for making molds from models then casting and finishing the work.

Fumiya Mukoyama’s Zogan Yusai
by Naomi Tsukamoto

Japan is filled with pottery and potters and if you’re a young ceramic artist living in one of the pottery towns, you want to make your own mark to set you apart. Fumiya Mukoyama does just that with his inlaid technique emphasizing the separation of colors. The technique requires patience and precision but the results are stunning.

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Abstract Reflection
by Lauren Sandler

To Lauren, bowl forms are particularly interesting for decorating because they provide an expansive landscape to explore and a generous open object when functioning. Her technique is simple but her skill and perfectionism set her work apart. Pretty much no equipment and minimal tools and very expressive pieces.

Thrown Agateware
by Michelle Erickson and Robert Hunter

Michelle Erickson loves to solve mysteries. In the previous issue, she recreated a traditional hand-built form using an agateware technique, and now she demonstrates how to create thrown agateware pieces. Her research keeps this historic technique viable in the 21st century.


In the Mix: Mixing Colored Clay

As a supplement to Michele Erickson’s articles on agateware in this issue and the November/December issue as well, here’s a description of how to create colored clays. The process is simple and allows you to get color that’s more than surface deep.

Tools of the Trade: Cracks in the Kiln
by Robert Battey

If you’ve ever been concerned about the cracks in your electric kiln, perhaps you needn’t be concerned. Robert Battey of L&L Kilns gives you the low down on how to assess cracks and which ones need attention, as well as how to keep cracking to a minimum.

Supply Room: Feldspar: The Potter’s Pet Rock

If potters have a favorite rock, it has to be feldspar. This versatile remnant from the early years of the formation of the earth supply potters with the key ingredient for all their glazes. Like a natural frit, these rocks rock! To learn more about clay and glaze components, check out Mimi Obstler’s book Out of the Earth, Into the Fire.

Tips from the Pros: Block Printing
by Ann Ruel

For anyone who’s done printmaking, carving printer’s blocks is a basic. Ann shows how you can carve these pliable blocks to create any texture you can come up with and transfer the design to your next clay project.

Instructor’s File: Kbach Ornamentation
by Jake Allee

Join Jake on a journey to Cambodia to discover a simple decorating technique used there for hundreds of years. He breaks this seemingly complex decoration down into its basic elements then describes how to recreate the design on your work.

Off the Shelf: Wall Pieces
by Sumi von Dassow

When you’ve run out of horizontal surfaces to put your work on, look to the walls! Sumi reviews the latest book about all different kinds of vertically displayed work from small pieces to architectural elements. For a look at the review, see our Ceramic Arts Daily Bookstore.


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