Terracotta out the kiln

Updated: Apr 19

The kiln gods smiled down on me and somehow this piece survived the kiln! I really was not expecting the low fire and high fire glazes to work together but they produced a really beautiful result. Although terracotta does normally prefer to be fired to a lower temperature, the 1260º firing turned it a beautiful deep red-brown colour. The low fire transparent glaze turned into pools of a beautiful blue where the glaze gathered in the clay texture or where it was thicker. The satin matte that I developed in unit 1 also worked extremely well and just as I had hoped over the external surface of the pot - allowing some of the dark terracotta to peak through but also pooling into a lovely satin cream colour in the texture of the vessel, accentuating it further.


I'm so happy with the result of this piece and it came out even better than I had imagined! The glaze works super well with the texture and they both compliment each other beautifully and the form also works aesthetically well, with the small handles adding a really nice added element of detail and delicacy to the otherwise shaped form.


Taking this piece forward, I want to experiment with my additions of handles and continue developing different glazes that compliment textural surfaces. It could also be interesting to try and combine this with my other concept of narratives somehow, possibly leaving some smoother sections for illustrations or ceramic transfers?


Reflection:

This piece was a great starting point in exploring intuitive making, employing chance and risk while allowing the material to drive the outcome. The textural surface created through maker marks, highlighted by my choice of glaze, reinforces the quality of 'handmade' in this piece. This has been a great starting point in my exploration of tacit knowledge and workmanship of risk, as discussed my David Pye in 'The Nature and Art of Workmanship'.





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