Monday, January 30, 2012

Glowing Translucent Porcelain of the Sea.

Dear fellow classmates.  It is a joy be taking this course with you all.  I am an ECON major and love getting to experience the Architecture department.

My first college course was a dual-enrollment course I took while in high school.  Most of my experience with pottery has been on the throwing wheel.  I love ceramics....the whole process of imagining, working with the clay, and then completely transforming the creation into something akin to stone by baking it at 2000+ degrees!  I love that ceramics, although brittle, have the potential to last thousands of years. 

I love throwing pots, but I have been attracted to the idea of making architectural ceramics for some time.  Emulating MC Escher with bas relief tiles does not sound like homework, it sounds like fun!  I am looking forward to playing with different 2d geometric patters and adding the third dimension through the sculpting or computer rendering process.  My goal is to bridge the gap between symmetry geometry with the organic sensibility of natural forms.  I want the viewer to feel good, or at least something positive, when they view my wall tile installations.  I also want the viewer to gravitate towards touching the tiles and have is be a sensual experience, like one would touch a perfectly polished rock on the beach and feel some sort of delight that nature had effortlessly made such an elegant yet simple thing.  

In my search for inspiration from other artists, I came across David Scott Smith.  He makes very thin and therefore translucent porcelain pieces that he mounts on the wall with a back light.  He says they are "yummy" and I agree.  Although they are not really what I want to make, I was intrigued  and appreciated seeing a new approach to working with ceramics.  I hope you all enjoy these as much as I did when I first discovered them.        

To see more of his work, check him out here,

I've been exposed to ceramics for awhile having a parent that is an art teacher with a focus in ceramics. Yet I take this for granted, putting off finding the time to keep up with practice and joined this class to regain a feel for the area of craft. I enjoy most about the area is textural qualities that can be achieved and seems to best suit smooth organic forms. The picture is a set of dishes by Karen Morgan, an artist from Kilkenny, Ireland and I like best the almost liquid-like quality added to them where the side fold over which also appears to be functional as a place to carry the piece.

Friday, January 27, 2012

It Runs in the Family

I became interested in ceramics when I visited my grandfather, a potter in Pensacola, FL. He let us throw our own pots and taught us how to make "pinch" pots. Although we were only there for a short visit, he sent us our pots in the mail after he fired them. I didn't know it at the time, but he is an award-winning potter in the Gulf states and he makes his own glazes. The picture above is an example of his work, with green-blue glazing.

Exploring Ceramics

I decided to take Ceramics, because I wanted to gain an appreciation for the material in relation to its origins and ways to manipulate it for functional purposes. As a child, I liked to work with polymer clay to create beads, animal figurines, and other little trinkets. Once I started taking art classes in high school that dealt with natural clay, I became fascinated with it. I was making advanced objects like mugs and bowls that I used. Learning new techniques and creating those projects in this class will be extremely rewarding to me as an artist.

Last semester, I had to do a statistics project that involved the local Blacksburg Farmers' Market. One vendor made plates, bowls, and all sorts dinnerware of objects out of clay. He kept to a theme of using a  blue glaze. I loved his work and would like to own a piece one day, but couldn't find any on the website. I posted two pictures below to give you an idea as to what his work looked like. His style was more so of the bottom picture with touches of lighter blue glaze in the top picture.

Here are the links to the websites for the pictures.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Looking forward to..

I chose to take the ceramics elective so I could learn more about working with clay; I've never had the opportunity to experiment with it before in a formal setting, so I'm looking forward to all the possibilities such as casting.

The paper bag porcelain sculpture was made using a casting process, and I'm quite excited to explore that method.

For more work from Makoto Komatsu, check out the following link:

Ceramics, a beautiful medium

I am in ceramics because I love working with clay. It is the most natural material for man to work with and has qualities that I highly admire. It comes naturally from the earth. It wants to become an object. It expresses the intent of the creator. It rejects mistakes, but gives limitless chances. After it is fired, it endures. It faithfully serves its purpose even over long periods of time. Its value grows with age.

Works of Aoki Ryota

Why am I here?

I joined Ceramics because i have always been interested in art, especially the "hands-on" side.  I have fiddled a little bit with ceramics before in middle school and high school.  One of my favorite pieces I made was actually in 6th grade and shown below.

I was looking through different ceramics and I came across a Canadian artist who worked with British Columbia's largest manufacturer of ceramics giftware.  Since I am Canadian (dual citizen actually), I found this very interesting.  A picture of a vase created by Herta Gerz from the 1950's is shown below.

If you would like to read more, you can follow the link:

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Tile Design

I thought this handmade tile by Dale Wiley had a lot of the qualities we have been discussing in class. Parts of the design seem to be a tessellation of the leaves, and there are also varying heights as well as detailed carvings.

Here are also some other decorative tile designs:

Monday, January 23, 2012


This is a piece by Keri Straka titled "Longing." I found the detailing and form rather interesting. The way she handles the material is really remarkable. After taking pottery last semester, I have a huge sense of appreciation for her ceramic work. The amount of time to do this piece is and more so how she did it is mind boggling to me.

Here is a link to more of her work:

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Goodbye to a Design Legend

Over our holiday break, the design community lost a great artist, Eva Zeisel. I have put a link to a great video of her from TED talks, I hope you enjoy listening to her.

TED Talks with Eva Zeisel