Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Wall Hangings in the Making

In class I merrily meddled with texture, glaze and glass again (and yes, I'm still not in the mood for many words).

Monday, 26 January 2009

Odd and Rough

My hands need some rest, which gives me the opportunity to post some pictures of my little odd bowl filled with blue bottle glass and a tiny pinch pot.

Friday, 23 January 2009

Catching Up

My hands do very badly at the moment, so only a few words today.

Last Week

... I exercised (or maybe tortured) them by making more textured dishes, that are going to be wall hangings, if they turn out alright. They are very flat and fun to make.

One of these has more than 750 indentations and the other one around 500.

On this smaller one I counted 150.

At the weekend

... I went to Berlin to see the great Paul Klee exhibition at the Neue Nationalgalerie. My arms loathe train rides, but the rave of colour and spending a day on art was worth it.

At the Pottery

... I held another glazing session.


... I was sewing a very simple felt coaster to move my swollen fingers.

My mother wants to have some because the undersides of my ceramics sometimes are a bit scratchy, although I always make them very smooth. This happens when tiny crumbs of clay get attached to the surface in the kiln during firings.

Friday, 16 January 2009


The first class of this year took place a few days ago. I'm so out of routine that I forgot to take pictures and I continued messing things up by glazing this textured bowl and adding glass in another way than I originally intended. I mainly used fine grains of transparent and brown glass (I have not experimented much with this so far.) as well as some red beads that change their colour to almost black, but I'd like to know how they react with transparent. So let's see, what this will look like.

You can see in this bowl, that my claymates again refer to as oriental-looking, how red, orange and yellow burn away in the kiln. I guess they are fired too high to keep their colour, but I still like to use them. I can't experiment with temperature but maybe I get some other ideas.

The carved bowl I prepared with glass in the last class of 2008 came out quite disappointing. The petals melted really nice but the beads did not stay where they should. You'll get to see this (and more finished pieces) as soon as I get around to take some pictures.

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Cup and Saucer

Playing around with clay has been very frustrating lately. I tried a lot and I messed up a lot. Nothing turns out as I want it and I make so many stupid mistakes. So, here are the pieces that made it through.

I made another textured bowl. Let's hope that making every single one of those imprints by hand does something good to my wrists! (I doubt it though.)

For the first time I tried to make a cup (which was a frustrating experience as well) and I also added a matching saucer. Usually when I'm satisfied with a piece there's some sort of euphoria kicking in, but it's just not happening at the moment.

Friday, 9 January 2009

The Pierced Vase

Sculpting this vase was a great pleasure. (Maybe it even is more of a sculpture than a vase.) It seems to be alive. I finished it months ago and tried over and over again to take some proper pictures of it, but I'm never satisfied. This piece looks different from every angle and is very hard to photograph. I never get tired of looking at it. You just have to see the real thing.


Monday, 5 January 2009

Bold Relief

This is the mould I made of my carved bowl. I'm itching to try it out soon.
As the clay shrinks when fired (which makes this mould smaller than the original from what it was formed) it would be possible to scale down the design more and more by successively making clay moulds from pieces formed over them. Quite amazing, isn't it?

Thursday, 1 January 2009

My annual Booklist

It's time to look back a little and doing this I'm very, very glad that I started taking pottery classes last year! It's something I thoroughly enjoy and I even think I'm really good for an absolute beginner with aching hands and very little practice. The coolest (or rather hottest) thing I did last year was melting glass. Okay, it happened in the kiln, but still... (Really, I'm totally proud of this fact. I melted glass, woohoo!)
My New Year's resolutions are quite the same as last year: I'd like to do crafty stuff as often as possible (and I want to get better with my pottery) and I'd like to read more books (or at least as many as last year). As I have the bad habit to put my booklists online, here's my list of books I read in 2008 with my favourites being Virginia Woolfs "Mrs Dalloway", that I reread after a long time, Herman Melville's ambigiuous "Pierre" and Richard Dawkins' atheistic educational pamphlet.

Books 2008

Georg Schramm - Lassen Sie es mich so sagen
Ian McEwan - Atonement
Eva-Maria Metcalf - Astrid Lindgren
Walter Womacka - Farbe bekennen
Lisa Moos - Das erste Mal und immer wieder
Fiona Davidson - Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Emily Brontë - Wuthering Heights
Eric J. Hobsbawm - Nationen und Nationalismus
Roger Willemsen - Afghanische Reise
Stephen Fry - The Hippopotamus
Daniela Dahn - Demokratischer Abbruch
Rolf Hochhuth - McKinsey kommt & Moliéres Tartuffe
Georg Vobruba - Entkoppelung von Arbeit und Einkommen. Das Grundeinkommen in der Arbeitsgesellschaft
Bruce J. Dierenfield - The Civil Rights Movement
Alex Hannaford - Scissor Sisters
John Henry Mackay - Die Anarchisten
Patricia Highsmith - Carol
Virginia Woolf - Mrs Dalloway
Zadie Smith - On Beauty
Naomi Klein - No Logo!
Helmut Blazek - Rosa Zeiten für rosa Liebe
Matthias Arnold - Van Gogh und seine Vorbilder
Tatjana Rasina u.a. - Die Volkskunst der Sowjetunion
Shuichi Kato - Geheimnis Japan
Shirin Ebadi - Mein Iran
Banksy - Wall and Piece
Fjodor Dostojewski - Der Idiot
Albrecht Müller - Die Reformlüge
Herman Melville - Pierre oder die Doppeldeutigkeiten
Wolfgang Herzberg - Gerry Wolff. Die Rose war rot
Virginia Woolf - Mrs Dalloway in Bond Street and other stories
Ralf Husmann - Nicht mein Tag
Robert Hughes - Lucian Freud. Gemälde
Jean-Louis Ferrier - Paul Klee
Wolfgang Hütt - Walter Womacka
Jutta Ditfurth - Was ich denke
Charlotte Roche - Feuchtgebiete
Jutta Ditfurth - Durch unsichtbare Mauern
Phil Braham - Naked Men
Milan Kundera - Die unerträgliche Leichtigkeit des Seins
Pierre Restany - Hundertwasser
Charlotte & Peter Fiell - Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Měrćin Nowak-Neumann - Meister Krabat, der gute sorbische Zauberer
Patrick Bade - Lempicka
Jürgen Miermeister - Rudi Dutschke
Will Pryce - Die Kunst der Holzarchitektur
Helmut Kuhn - Arm, Reich - Und dazwischen nichts
Alice Schwarzer & Barbara Maia - Liebe Alice! Liebe Barbara!
Richard Dawkins - The God Delusion
Niki de Saint-Phalle - Der Tarot-Garten
Brigitte Reinhardt (Hrsg.) - Niki de Saint-Phalle. Liebe, Protest, Phantasie
Marjane Satrapi - Persepolis
Max Goldt - Vom Zauber des seitlich dran Vorbeigehens