As promised, here are some of the earliest things I made while in college. The photos are rough but I still enjoy remembering those early days as I began to explore the possibilities and the limits of clay. I was lured to the ceramics class during my freshman year at S.U.C. at Geneseo, NY. after seeing some of the students do a raku firing in the middle of a snowstorm. The sound of hot pots whistling through the snowbanks where they threw them after reduction is a permanent one in my brain. My first few teachers weren’t very interested in wheel throwing and I followed their lead.
I wasn’t much of a photographer in those days, which saves you from some of the other ideas I was playing with in those days…lots of kewpie doll molds, there was an architectural phase and then there was ‘the penis people'(!) to name a few. They were all terribly interesting to me then and now don’t necessarily ‘stand the test of time’, but I have always taken pleasure from exploring new ideas in clay. That’s still true today I’m glad to say.
This work is circa 1974-1977 and is all raku fired and chronological.
I have continued to use this idea of stretched slabs from time to time, but since these early days I have always worked in stoneware. I’m a big fan of the permanence that high firing begets.
|This is the first thing I made that other people really responded to…I confess that like that feeling.|
|I think I called this one “Siesta”|
|I made a whole burnt out western movie set.|
I modified a pizza peel to move these big flat wall pieces.
|This is about 20″ across. broken and reassembled after reduction. I wish I still had this one.|
Tomorrows big thrill…my first pot.