Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Moving Forward, Looking Back and Year One.

We are getting a very late start on our blog posts for our last show, but "better late than never" always holds true.

Crimson Laurel Gallery in Bakersville, is featuring one of the finest young potters in western North Carolina today, two North Carolina living treasures, and one of the most accomplished ceramic artists in the country. Our featured exhibition is "Year One: New Work by Alex Matisse" and our showcase exhibition is "Moving Forward: Looking Back". Additionally, our online collection is "Ceramics by Jack Troy".

Year One is an exhibition of ceramics by Marshall, NC potter Alex Matisse.
His work is made in a fusion of preindustrial country traditions in both process and material. It is fired in a large wood burning kiln and made of as many local materials as the chemistry will allow, while still affording him the physical attributes necessary for his aesthetic decisions. He believes in the beautiful object; that there are inescapable aesthetic truths, physical attributes, that remove time and place from the defining characteristics of the made object. These objects can be viewed today or many years from now and be understood as beautiful.

This exhibition is a collection of work from the first firings of Alex's new kiln. As an apprentice of both Matt Jones and Mark Hewitt, Alex has combined strong and refined forms developed and as an apprentice with his own precise and uniquely beautiful decoration. Alex is one of the finest potters in western North Carolina today.

Moving Forward, Looking Back is an exhibition that features two of Mitchell County, North Carolina's Living Treasures. As Billie Ruth Sudduth completes her 10,000th basket she is featuring some of the most requested baskets from among her first 10,000. Norm Schulman is one of the most accomplished and recognized potters in the United States and he will be exhibiting his most recent works and signing copies of his book.

Billie Ruth Sudduth's baskets blend the historical with the present through
color, pattern, surface embellishment, and form. She is inspired by the classical shapes typical of Shaker and Appalachian baskets but she travels back over seven centuries for the most profound influence on her work: The Nature Sequence, developed by Leonardo of Pisa (Italy). She wants to expand the possibilities of design while maintaining function. Her weaving utilizes a mathematical structure of spiral growth found in nature to create baskets with a rhythmic, naturally flowing design. They are both visual and tactile, beckoning the viewer to touch and explore with the eyes and hands. She does not separate herself from nature but through her weaving, affirms being a part of it.

Norman Schulman, is a master ceramist, coming from a career of
more than 50 years of practicing, teaching and leading in his field. Throughout his career as a ceramic artist, he has taught and mentored many potters who have, themselves, become distinguished in the field. His many accomplishments have included professor and head of ceramics and glass at Rhode Island School of Design and head of Ceramics at Ohio State University. His works are included in many public collections, including the Smithsonian, American Craft Museum, Museum of Art and Design (NY), Mint Museum, Cameron Art Museum and Schein-Joseph International Museum. His work has become a search for the essential through simplicity of progress, form and surface; using a small anagama-type kiln and a stoneware clay body.

Jack Troy, teacher, potter, and writer, retired from Juniata College in 2006, where he taught for 39 years. He hasled over 185 workshops for potters at colleges, universities, and art centers in the U. S. and abroad. His career has taken him to 13 countries, and his work is in many private and public collections, including the Smithsonian Institution, Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park (Japan), Auckland (NZ) Museum of Art and the Kalamazoo Institute of Art. His first book, Salt Glazed Ceramics, was published in 1977. In 1978 he built Pennsylvania’s first anagama-style kiln at Juniata College, and personal anagamas at his home in 1987 and 2006. In 1995 he published Wood-fired Stoneware and Porcelain. His collection of poems, Calling the Planet Home, was published in 2003 and more than 60 of his articles, book reviews, and exhibition catalogue essays have appeared in the major periodicals in his field. The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts awarded him two Craft Fellowships for his work in ceramics, and a Fellowship in Literature for his poetry. He was selected by the Council to make the awards for the 2005 Governor’s Awards for the Arts. We will be featuring a collection of his smaller works that are being shown for the first time in our area.

These exhibitions will remain through August 27th. Each exhibition is available online. For more information call 828-688-3599 or online at www.crimsonlaurelgallery.com.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Black Cohosh

Also on the parkway, ton of Black Cohosh.  Never new that is what it was!

Deer food

I finally figured out a use for these weeds I have seen all my life, especially growing up. We used to wrap the stem around itself and then "shoot" the head into the air. But the other day,at the studio, I saw these little fawn eating them. Never knew they were a food group.

Rhododendron on the Parkway 2011

I have been out riding on the Blue Ridge Parkway and the rhododendron are still looking good!

Barrel Firing with Nathan Neufeld 2011

I took a bunch of photos today at the barrel firing we did at Nick Lafone's place.  Nathan Neufeld showed us all how it's done.  He taught a class at Odyssey in the spring and is on his way to his first year of college at Kansas City Art Institute in a couple of weeks.    You can find the photos here:


There's a video, too, at the end.

Marian Parkes

Friday, July 22, 2011

Lucian Freud died.

Lucian Freud, the great painter, died at age 88.

Wanta blow your mind???  Google "lucian freud" and then click Images!


Studio Potter Summer Issue v39 N2

The Studio Potter Summer/Fall Issue on FAILURE is out! Surprise, surprise, western NC is well represented.  There are articles by our newest resident "failure" - Rachael Garceau, and long time "failure", Sue Grier, John Britt and the king of all "failure" Terry Gess.  Check it out!

Here is an exert from my article:

"The Nature of Ceramics is Disappointment"

"When I was working at Penland, a veteran student wrote on her evaluation of a particular ceramics class, “I know that the nature of ceramics is disappointment, but this class took that to a new level.” I have often thought of this statement and what confounded me most was that in spite of her disappointment she kept coming back time after time! It seems to me that the real nature of ceramics is optimism in the face of unrelenting failure. In this rephrasing, we shift our perception, work with the inevitable mistakes and persevere because we love the work. "

Pear Tomatoes

Cool sweaty cherry tomatoes on the vine July 22, 2011 in Mitchell County NC. What could be better?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Slaked 1/2 & 1/2 for pickup

I've got about 8 gallons of 1/2 & 1/2 for someone who wants to come pick it up...please!  nelle@oyclaypottery.com. 

Cool Fresh Water Drops!

Seeing cones in the kiln

If you are having trouble seeing cones in your kiln as it fires, try shining in this flashlight beam and you will be pleasantly surprised that the entire kiln is suddenly visible with 1,000,000 lumens blasting on it.

small kiln

looking for a test kiln
as always
any leads?

Lisa Gluckin

Kiln For Sale near Penland

Amaco kiln  EX365 SF  shelves, furniture. Only fired 5 times low fire.  $1800 for all!  You pick up in Penland NC area.  SOLD    Call 765-6539

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Eastern Hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana)

Also learned that this is a Eastern Hophornbeam. Never knew!!

Red-spotted newt (Notophthalmus v. viridescens)

Took a hike up on Round Mountain and saw this little beauty.  They still exist!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Aluminum Foil Saggar Fire Workshop

Aluminum Foil Saggar Fire 
Instructor: Edge Barnes
August 20 & 21
9:00am-4:00pm, Saturday & Sunday

Explore the alternative firing method of firing burnished pieces by wrapping them in aluminum foil rather than ceramic saggars.  Demonstrations and discussions will include:  throwing; trimming and burnishing; horse-hair firing; various saggar firing techniques from pit-fires to kilns; clay choices for burnishing and thermal shock resistance; post-firing cleanup and enhancement; and materials for decorating/marking work. Participants may bring pieces to decorate and fire in either a bon-fire or a primitive kiln (method is as yet to be determined).  Participants may also bring organic materials to add to the saggar, however all firing materials will be provided.  
Pieces for firing can be any clay from low-fire to porcelain, although smooth white clays give better color response in addition to smoother surface.  Please limit pieces in size to small to medium with no fragile appendages.  It's better to leave those and  large flat pieces for firing on your own or in smaller groups.
Recommended items to bring in additon to pots include apron, work gloves, folding chair, natural fiber clothing. 
Tuition: $100 (plus $15 materials fee, payable to instructor)
Click Here for a Registration Form
Pre-Register by August 5th.
Email, Mail or Fax your Registration Form with payment or call Pocosin Arts at 252-796-2787 to register by phone.
Email: info@pocosinarts.org
Fax: 252-796-1685

Saturday, July 16, 2011


To share super-sweet studio in Marshall High Studios, Marshall, NC. Bright light, scenic & close to town. Electric kiln & Large gas kiln on premesis. Email Emily - reasonpots@gmail.com

Friday, July 15, 2011

Artist Residency

Artist In Residence (one year)Midwestern State University
Ceramics Department

Dates: September 1, 2011 through August 31, 2012

Application deadline: July 31, 2011

This self-directed residency is designed to provide a ceramic artist with studio access, as they make the transition from or between academic settings. Furthermore, the program is intended to allow a resident the time and space to pursue a body of work in a creative and energetic environment while enhancing the art program at Midwestern State University. The accepted artist will participate within the ceramics area as an informal collaborator and mentor for students, while working in the common studio space. To see images of the ceramics studio at Midwestern, go to:

Steve Hilton
Midwestern State University
Juanita and Ralph Harvey School of Visual Arts
3410 Taft Blvd
Wichita Falls, TX  76308

(940) 613.7041

Please do not hesitate to call or email if you have any questions
(Application deadline: July 31, 2011)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Gas Kiln for Sale - Santa Barbara California

Santa Barbara, California

I am now asking $750 for my updraft 12 cubic foot Olsen updraft kiln. If it
doesn't sell by Oct 15, will take highest bid, whatever it is. Offer
includes 8 12x24 shelves, more posts 5" and up than I ever needed. Best to
take apart and re-assemble on site. 48" x 46" x 65" Nice kiln, would keep it
but am too old to begin to fill it up!

Lesley Alexander 


Cynthia Bringle & Co. decorate Empty Bowls I

Here is a fun video of our clay club last night. Another one at :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v​=H134_ji0LSU

July 13, 2011 Clay Club

Had great fun last night at the Clay Club. John Hartom sponsored it and we all formed an assembly line (circle) and painted, waxed and glazed bowls.  Super fun!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

GG Hallelujah

The great Goo Gone has expunged a slip of wax resist. Completely. Though I haven't seen this product on the shelves recently. Too toxic? hp

Friday, July 8, 2011

Glazing Workshop August 9 - 13, 2011

If you want to learn about glazes in a fun and relaxed atmosphere then this is the class for you! It is only $325 which is dirt cheap!  Don't miss out. It is almost full.

This is the only actual mixing and firing workshop I am doing this year. You will finally learn everything you ever wanted to know about glazes.

"Glazing Workshop"
August 9-13, 2011, 10 am-4 pm
Medium: clay
Level: intermediate to advanced
Tuition: $325 Bascom members/$350 non-members/$40 material fee
This workshop is designed for potters who want to learn more about glazes and color development, or who are frustrated with not knowing what makes glazes work or fail, or for potters who want to develop or adjust their own glazes. We will work as a group with low, mid-range and high-fire glazes creating line and color blends to explore color possibilities over a broad range of bases. We will discuss what makes glazes work including oxides, kilns, firing, cones, Seger UMG, recipe method, etc. We will mix and test glaze recipes on test tiles only. Intermediate to advance students are best but all level are accepted.

Thursday, July 7, 2011



To whom it may concern:

I have 4,500 pieces of used K-26 soft insulation brick. You can buy all of the
bricks or just a partial amount. The bricks are in very good condition and have
never been fired over 1,300 degrees. I am selling the bricks for $2.50 each as
low as $2.00 each. If you buy larger quantities such as 100 pieces and up the
price will go down. The size of the bricks are 4 ½  x  9 x  2 ½ .
Thank you,

Demo Workshop - Claymakers - Durham

Attention to Detail
Emily Reason

Saturday, July 9, 2011
10:00- 5:00

In this workshop, Emily Reason shares the techniques and principles she applies to her porcelain pots. As Emily demonstrates the process of throwing, altering, trimming, assembling and carving her pieces, she’ll share tips for working with porcelain and explain how she makes decisions about form and surface in her work. As potters, our initial objective is to create forms that are conducive to function. Emily believes that when surface details are given thoughtful consideration of the form and pots are crafted with care, artistic voices are exposed. As a group we’ll discuss our motivation for making pottery, from inspiration to making a living as a potter. A slide presentation of Emily’s work and experiences will also be given.

Fee: $75

Craft Booth for Sale

Craft Booth for Sale

Corner interior booth suited for a 10 x 10 space or possibly a permanent space in your gallery or studio. Black Formica covers 8 foot long plywood, total of seven panels for glass corner shelves. Six lower pedestals have interior lighting underneath frosted glass. This booth is classy and in decent condition. Please note it is heavy. Cost- 500.00.

If interested please call Leah at 828-230-7676.

Potter looking for work.

My name is David and I am 19 years old. I am interested in working with a potter to learn as much as I can about ceramics.

I am the son of potters who grew up surrounded by hardworking parents who have supported themselves from their work but I would like to branch out and learn from others in the field. I am a hard worker and am capable of doing many tasks at hand.  

I currently live in Berea, KY but am interested in relocating to the Asheville or surrounding area. 

Will work cheap or room and board?

Please contact me at 859-868-8229.

CLAY CLUB: July 13th, 2011

Lisa Blackburn and John Hartom will be hosting Clay Club next week, Wednesday, July 13. Join us at the home of Empty Bowls and maybe decorate a bowl or two for the gas kiln. This is a pot-luck so bring a dish to pass. 6 p.m. to 8:30 or so.

We are located at 134 Lynnwood Lane off 19E between Burnsville and Spruce Pine. Look for Arbuckle Road on 19E, it is just east of Young's Tractors. Look for the large Arbuckle Rodeo sign on the south side of the intersection. Arbuckle goes only north. Turn onto Arbuckle and go about a mile and a half and you will see a white, horizontal board farm fence at the entrance to Lynnwood Lane. Turn in and follow the signs to our studio. If you start up the hill on switch backs, you have gone too far. 

Using David Voorhees' example from last month's meeting, we will have some tables set up with free copies of Ceramics Monthly and a large number of clay related books for sale, all very cheap. See you next week. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Judith Kiln Opening

Here is a link:

Soldner Mixer fore sale

Soldner Clay Mixer 1.jpg

For sale:  Soldner Studio Clay Mixer - $2000.  Mixer is in excellent condition.  Top and bottom bearings have been replaced several months ago.  Unit runs well and is on wheels.  Power is 220 volt and has a long electrical cord.  Rated to batch 150 pounds per batch wet.  Have another mixer and don't need two.  Picture taken before new electrical cord attached.  Mixer is located in Pittsburgh, PA and would prefer local pickup.  

Can arrange delivery with buyer paying costs.  Contact:  trorison@hotmail.com or phone 412 761-0540.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Studio Closing/ SALE, SALE, SALE...

Stuff For Sale:

Custom made wedgining table. If anyone has seen the ones in HCC....  the same blueprints were used to build this table. Sturdy as a rock, built with 2x4's and about 7 coats of varnish. 4" thick plaster covered with heavy canvas, 2 cutting wires. One of the wires gets the pots right off the bat. The other diagonal for wedging.Open storage under the table and I'll sweeten the deal with 2 custom made drying bats one for white clay and one for other clay.....
$350 --obo.

Custom built portable Raku' Kiln fired only twice I'll add my 40lb. tank with that for... $700--obo.

Skutt 1027, 3 phase 220 .....NEVER been fired.... All the furniture (shelves and posts)... stand and for under the stand 2" tiles.....$2,000--obo.

Brent  CXC (only used about 30 times) $1,000--obo.

Left Handed Giffin Grip.........$75.00--obo.

North Star 4" extruder with 28 shapes........ $200--  SOLD

Asst. tools you'd have to come and see them
Sieves  40, 60 and 80 mesh two sizes..... med.$12.00... and large $17.00
I have some chemicals which I'd have to go over and weigh, but I have them.
Many different size and shaped stamps..... again to be seen.
Bats all sizes and shapes and made of  different materials
This is Monday afternoon, July 4th, 2011, and I am thrilled that many of you have written to me. I also want to thank you for you sympathies. It's nice to know that you understand my terrible sadness at selling off what is so dear to me. At least now when my eyes well up I know that I am understood.

The reason I'm writing this little note is to let you know that I've had 2 storage units for years. One of them I emptied last week and had a 2 day yard sale. The second is the newer one that and holds all these precious things. Well, not all but a good many of them. I have REALLY hurt my back trying to do all this and as of today I am going to try and NOT do anything for 3 days. I got on this computer so I could address this as I didn't want any of you to think I was ignoring them.
 If I don't get right back to you PLEASE, understand that I'm not ignoring you, or taking any kind  things you write to me for granted.

I appreciate you all!!!

You'll hear from me very soon!!!!
THANK YOU ALL!!!!!!  Make me an offer!!!

Linda Falcone claymaster69@yahoo.com

Hilarious Job Posting

This post is a bit off the beaten track but I laughed so hard at this job posting that came from a Buddhist Center. Nothing against them.... but it was soooo funny.

In case you don't want to read it all, I will excerpt parts:

“Staff position at Rigdzin Ling: Kitchen Assistant
Rigdzin Ling has one staff position open for a dedicated volunteer as kitchen assistant. The work is six days a week, eleven months a year, and it is demanding both physically and in terms of taming your own mind. Renee McClain, the kitchen manager who will train and supervise you is renowned for being stern but kind—some people have left her and become professional chefs; some have simply left.

Food preparation presently involves a rotation of cooks, so you will need to work under a rotation of personalities. With Renee’s approval, you may eventually join that rotation, but you should arrive as a prep cook and be prepared to remain a prep cook for an indefinite period.

 Hard work, long hours, subordinate position, no pay….. 

The work is hard, outer and inner. The rewards, priceless....”

The sheer audacity is beautiful! That is for a volunteer position and they have multiple interviews and a probation period!!! *

Now, not to be disrespectful...but that sounds like about any minimum wage job in America, with one caveat, the boss isn’t fair or kind, so you may reach enlightenment faster on the outside! (Just in case you are not a low level worker and it isn't obvious, getting minimum wage with no insurance, is tantamount to volunteering because you spend all your $15,000 on housing, food, clothing, transportation, not to mention student loans, medicine, etc.) On second thought, there are plenty of arts organizations (not mentioning names), that could save some time, by rewording that announcement and posting it on their website.

What I get from this is that I have not spent a lifetime been oppressed by subordinate positions, long hard hours, no pay,  6 days a week, 11 months without vacation, etc. but, in fact, I have, in fact gifted with priceless rewards!  

Hope they are not like my airlines rewards- impossible to redeem!

*(Someone is being “gifted” by this employment arrangement – and I am guessing it is probably the center.)

Charles Bukowski: Poetry and Motion [HD]

Shaunna Lyons and Susan Feagin Show

Saddle in an Old Barn - Richard Oversmith

Shaunna and Susan are having a show at the Burnsville Gallery in North Carolina.

There is more information on the TRAC page:


but here is an exert:

“My recent work is hand-built vessels that are meant to be cheerful, lively, and colorful,” she says. Fellow potter John Britt once cautioned other potters about Susan’s work (with tongue in cheek drollery): “Never have your artwork too close to Feagin’s in a show. Viewers will walk by your table and then will be drawn like a magnet to her work. They won’t give your table the time of day.” The Birds and Words show will prove an exception to his caveat, however, for Shaunna Lyon’s pieces provide a perfect counterpoint to those of Susan.

Check it out!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Junco Eggs

Cheryl and I were hiking on the Roan (Carver's Gap to Grassy Ridge) and a Junco flew out from right by the trail. We knew that meant a birds nest so took a look. Sure enough. Got a photo. Cute little things!

Norm Schulman's Opening at Crimson Laurel 2011

Went to Norm's Opening at The Crimson Laurel last night.  Great shows this time (as always!).  This catalogue is available for $20 and Norm signed it, proceeds going to the Asheville Art Museum.  You can view the show and buy stuff at their website :

Also showing is Alex Matisse and his show is also fantastic!  Almost sold out already!

And then there is Billy Ruth Sudduth as well as Jack Troy.