26 March 2014

Old School

As promised, here are some of the earliest things I made while in college. The photos are rough but I still enjoy remembering those early days as I began to explore the possibilities and the limits of clay. I was lured to the ceramics class during my freshman year at S.U.C. at Geneseo, NY. after seeing some of the students do a raku firing in the middle of a snowstorm. The sound of hot pots whistling through the snowbanks where they threw them after reduction is a permanent one in my brain. My first few teachers weren't very interested in wheel throwing and I followed their lead. 
    I wasn't much of a photographer in those days, which saves you from some of the other ideas I was playing with in those days...lots of kewpie doll molds, there was an architectural phase and then there was 'the penis people'(!) to name a few.  They were all terribly interesting to me then and now don't necessarily 'stand the test of time', but I have always taken pleasure from exploring new ideas in clay. That's still true today I'm glad to say.  
This work is circa 1974-1977 and is all raku fired and chronological. 
I have continued to use this idea of stretched slabs from time to time, but since these early days I have always worked in stoneware. I'm a big fan of the permanence that high firing begets.
This is the first thing I made that other people really responded to...I confess that like that feeling.

I think I called this one "Siesta" 
I made a whole burnt out western movie set.
 I modified a pizza peel to move these big flat wall pieces.
This is about 20" across. broken and reassembled after reduction. I wish I still had this one.
Tomorrows big thrill...my first pot.


Dennis Allen said...

You've grown considerably.

Dennis Allen said...

See, I can be tactful.

smokieclennell said...

Dan: So glad you grew up! t

Sl8ofHand said...

Interesting to see your love (need) for handles emerging in this early work...