Friday, January 13, 2012

A clay menagerie

As part of my artist in residence duties I try to keep a few projects running at any given time so students that drop in outside of scheduled workshops and classes have something to look at. I'm currently resurrecting the school kiln and decided it'd be fun to make a small menagerie of suggestive animals.

Having seen a lot of clay and stone figurines over the years, especially dating between 20,000 and 30,000 BC, I wanted to capture that mode and feel while adding a contemporary element or two. Again, my animals are more suggestive that directly representational, meaning they may or may not look like a specific animal but give the viewer a little room to run with regard to what they might be.

They'll go through an initial cone 6 firing as I dust off the kiln and then get a treatment with some nice gloss glazes in a variety of not so stone age colors. While it wold be a stretch, as a former archaeologist I'm fairly sensitive and conscious of creating objects that can be passed off as historic artifacts. This is something that follows directly with my glass knives project as well where I use mainly colored glass and be sure to clean up debitage from the areas where I make the pieces. Though, I have been known to create "art sites" using purple, red or other bright colored glass, something obviously not found in the archaeological record.

I'll be sure to post the results and hopefully finish the little critters soon.  

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