Thursday, July 29, 2010

Penland Post Office Website

Check out the Penland Post Office Webpage:

Last Chance for August Clay Club!!

Last call for August Clay Club!  Can anyone host it?  (I can't because I am having a class that week at my studio with 7 students and it will be crowded.)

We could just meet at Bama Que or Pizzart for dinner??????

If not, we will cancel.


John Britt Pottery

Cracking Problems

Linda McFarling has been having some problems with cracking and was wondering if anyone else has had the same problems or knows of someone who has. She uses Phoenix Clay and soda/salt fires it to cone 10.

If you could leave a comment for her or send her an email:

Monday, July 26, 2010

Carolina Clay Matters

Had a great workshop at Carolina Clay Matters. We had about 65 people come for a day of Glaze Question and Answer.  It was a great group and a very nice facility at Central Carolina Community College.

Carolina Hot

This is what happens to a banana that is sitting on your car seat all day in Charlotte North Carolina in July.

It was yellow when I left and 8 hours later it was black and well cooked. Yum yum! Drizzle a little chocolate syrup on and you have a dessert.

Don't miss it!


from crusty & toasty to smooth & silky

July 01, 2010 through July 31, 2010

BURNT (a past tense and a past participle of burn – related to burned) Artists Include: Dan Anderson, William Baker, Ben Bates, Chris Campbell, Linda Christianson, Bede Clarke, Mark Goertzen, Donn Hedman, Gary Hootman, Phil Rogers, Joe Singewald and Tom & Jeff Unzicker.

Time is running out to see the show. It's an "online exhibition" at a great little "online gallery", so stop by and check it out.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Clear glazes

What's the difference between a clear glaze and a transparent glaze? If it's the opacifier in the clear, why isn't it opaque instead of clear? And what causes a (lowfire) clear to turn milky -- is there a way to correct the glaze. Help - none of this is clear to me!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Skull and Snake

This was one of my favorites though. It was in the Ivory Collection which was magnificent.  Don't have info on it but it was amazing.

John Britt

Lucy Rie and Hans Coper

Here were some of the pots we got to see with Robin on our tour of the Musuem.  It was great to see them in person and to get his historical perspective.

Coper, Hans 

German; British

mid 20th century                 

stoneware; black glaze; wheel thrown; glazed         

Gift of Nedra Jane Paul in memory of Dorothy M. Worthington   

globular bodied pot with a restricted neck which then flares abuuptly to a discoid top; small central hole; black


Rie, Lucie     

England, 1960 C - 1965 C   

Mid 20th Century               

Stoneware; wheel thrown; glazed    

Gift of Nedra Jane Paul in memory of Dorothy M. Worthington   

round, plan view; yellow semi-gloss glaze, somewhat grainy, inside & outside      

John Britt


Got back and checking out all the stuff happening here at the studio. Plenty of butterflies this year!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Arrowmont Glaze Class August 22 - 28, 2010

 I have a Glaze Class coming up in August at Arrowmont. As you know they may be moving so this is a good chance to come to a class there!

  • Basic Ceramic Raw Materials and Glaze Chemistry

August 22 – 28, 2010

Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts

This course in basic ceramic chemistry is designed for potters who want to become better acquainted with the materials used in ceramics, their origins and uses in high-fire, mid-range and low fire glazes. We will briefly cover oxides and their sources, the Seger Unity Molecular formula, and will mix and test glaze recipes on test tiles. Some experience with ceramics is preferred.
Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts
556 Parkway
PO Box 567
Gatlinburg, TN 37738
Ph. 865-436-5860

Need some clay

Yo Clubbers in the Spruce Pine area. I am in search of some Earthen Red clay from Highwater but don't want to head to Asheville. Does anyone have a box or bag I could buy?

John Britt

Giant Hogweed

Saw this Giant Hogweed plant in British Columbia.  Made us think of Alice in Wonderland.

John Britt


Here is a couple of pictures of a whale skeleton that the students at Pearson College mounted.  If I remember correctly, the whale washed up on shore (Metchosin means stinking fish) and so they weighted it and sunk it in the bay until the fish, otters, seals, crabs, etc. cleaned the carcass and then brought it up and mounted it.

Amazing .

John Britt

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

MiSSA 2010


Just got back from about 3 weeks away. I was teaching a Glaze Class at MISSA (Metchosin International Summer School of the Arts) in British Columbia.

It was a great time and we had 9 people, so of whom are pictured here.

They were a great and very productive group.  I will post some more images when I recover from the red-eye flight.

John Britt

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Crimson Laurel Gallery Presents Three New Shows.

Crimson Laurel Gallery in Bakersville, North Carolina presents three exhibitions featuring five of the finest ceramic artists in the country. Our featured exhibition is "Contiguous...Ceramic Sculptures by Cristina Cordova and Jerilyn Virden" and our showcase exhibition is "What's in a line...Ceramics by David Eichelberger and Tom Spleth". And, our online exhibition is "Ceramic Sweets and Small Works...Ceramics by Jason Bige Burnett".

Cristina Cordova's (pictured side) provocative new sculptures are haunting yet beckon those who come upon them to look closely and try to understand their suffering and longings. Through the primary vehicle of the figure, she is in constant search for a presence. These new works will include materials never before seen in Cristina's sculptures. Jerilyn Virden looks to primitive objects that have a contemporary relevance. She pares down forms and exaggerates isolated elements, thus accentuating their sense of generosity and strength. Jerilyn will also be introducing new surfaces and forms for this exhibition.

David Eichelberger is captivated by the dialogue in his work between simplicity and complexity. He uses clean, graceful lines to capture qualities he finds in the organic world. This will be David's first exhibit of post-graduate work. Tom Spleth's slip cast porcelain cups (pictured below) are made complete with tiny script capturing select and provocative messages. Tom will also be showing his vase forms that are recognized for the simplicity of their truly unique forms. Combined, these two artists demonstrate the importance of the "line" in ceramic design.

New works by Jason Bidge Burnett, aka Cakeboy, involve print processes and visual narratives that are simultaneously personal and universal. Jason's new forms both investigate multiple surface techniques and explore imagery that is influenced by the glitz and glam of carnivals, pop culture, and commercial design.

These exhibitions opened on July 1st and remain through August 31st. Thanks to all those who joined us for the artists reception on July 16th. Each exhibition will be available online on July 1st. For more information call 828-688-3599 or online at

New pictures of the Energy Exchange Pallet kiln

I just put a group of photos up on my blog of the Energy Exchange pallet kiln.


Sunrise at the EnergyXchange.

Light smoke reported coming from the chimney. The first firing of the Pallet Kiln is under way, the pyrometer's rising.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Awesome Contmeporary Ceramics

Going to Crimson Laurel Gallery tonight for the recpetion of "Contiguous," works by Cristina Cordova & Jerilyn Virden
and "What's in a Line," works by Tom Spleth & David Eichelberger.
The show runs through August 31. The reception is tonight at 6pm.

okinawa glaze materials

While walking through Tsuboya Pottery Village in Okinawa yesterday we saw lots of wild things. One thing that really struck me was this one pottery shop which also sold glaze materials. Everything was in Japanese and I couldn't read any of it, but even looking at the materials- I thought, what do you do with this??
Bags of metal shavings, and cones which were not labeled.
I mean- you have to keep track of your cones??
We went into a few shops that hap pots from 16C. I can't wait until my translator gets here because I wasn't able to really talk to folks about what we were seeing.
Below is a picture of an original Tsuboya kiln- obviously not still in use, but it's lovely. I can't get over these tile roofs! For a kiln shed! Sayonara for now, but I'm looking forward to sharing what we see when we get back!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sell one pot and be set for life!

Someone forwarded this to me and it's just too good not to share. A potter in AK has posted a raku piece on Ebay for ...... well, you'll see for yourself. search for item# 250502068224

But, hey, it's free shipping! And they take PayPal!!

Kiln for Sale

For sale: a new cone 10 Caldera test kiln with a sentry xpress controller (digital) made by Paragon. It has been fired to cone 06 once. The kiln fires on 120 volts to 2350 degrees F. You can fire it in ramp-hold or cone-fire. All firing info and the operating book is with it. You may check the website below to see pictures of the kiln. (Two of the corners on the kiln top have a little bit of crumbled brick which happened when it was shipped. It does not affect the firing at all.) This is a very small and very portable test kiln. Firing chamber is 8”x8” wide and 6 ¾ “ deep.

This kiln belongs to Mint Hill Arts Pottery 51 but they have decided they need other things more than the test kiln, so they have decided to sell it. It is made for slumping glass jewelry, silver clay, beads, or for testing cone 6 or 10 electric glazes.

The Paragon price new is $550.00 with the furniture kit plus they charge $25.00 shipping, so the total from Paragon is $575.00. This kiln for sale does not have furniture but you can get it for $25.00 from Paragon. We are asking $475.00.

If interested, contact me at or call 704-753-4673.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Group Ceramics Show at Red Sky Gallery

New Works by:

Opens this Friday July 9 with a reception from 6:30-8pm

1244 East Blvd, Charlotte, NC

show runs through August 31st


Clay Club- Tomorrow July 7th
6-8 pm at Michael Kline's Studio in Bakersville, NC

See how it's made! : A demonstration by our host

Bask! : in the newly completed studio siding!

Eat! : Bring a dish/snack/ beverage to share

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Help Fill the Kiln

Hey Clubbers,

We're planning on lighting a fire in the new wood kiln at the EnergyXchange in a few weeks, and we're not sure if there are enough pots to fill it.

Now is your chance to *donate* a few pots to this maiden voyage, and maybe get a few of your pots fired in a wood/soda kiln.

If you're coming to the monthly Clay Club meeting at Michael Kline's studio on July 7th, that would be a great time to bring 'em. We ask that you make sure the pots are bisque fired, cone 10 clay, and that they be glazed and ready to go. Don't worry about wadding, we will handle that on loading day. If you can tell us what clay it is, and what slip or glazes are on it, that would be even better.

Look for Joy Tanner or Will Baker at Clay Club next week to hand off your box of pots, or if you cannot make it then and wish to send a pot or two, contact us to make arrangements or just stop by the EnergyXchange one day and leave us your pots.

We are planning to load and fire around the 15th of July, so stay tuned for more details.

*we cannot gaurantee that your pots will make it in, but if you don't bring 'em you'll never know.

** we also cannot gaurantee that your pots will come out looking good, as this is a first firing of new kiln. if you don't know what this implies, ask a friend about the first firing of their kiln.