My work represents the human figure in an expressive manor, looking upon the parts of the body that are usually hidden under dress, bringing on a sense of sensuality and intimacy. For me there are several links I find connecting intimacy with my pots. There’s the relationship I build through the long process of coil building my work, the concept that my work is based on the nude form itself and also the firing process and final result as I undress the bowls from the foil saggar that give each pot a unique personal finish.
The form my bowls are taking on are sourced from the nude figure. I am constantly gathering information from life drawing sessions, as this is the best way to have a full understanding of the forms I wish to emulate. With the information I have gathered through sketching I have been drawn to make interpretations of the figurative form that gesture towards the sense of movement and I created this in white grogged stoneware vessels. I have got this result through mould making and then coil building onto the press mould. Coiling allows sensitivity towards creating the specific shape desired. Ive coated the vessels in porcelain slip to create the texture of skin as well as sponged on oxides to add a stippling effect an expression of pores. Once I finish building the form and applying slip, my bowls are then fired with an old technique called saggar firing though instead of using a clay saggar I substituted that for tin foil, which saves on time and is more efficient.
In the future my work will continue to experiment with surface colour and texture reaching out to discover how new materials stains/oxides and combustibles can be combined with the elements in raku firing to represent the sensual qualities of the human condition.
Though I had hoped to hand in two pieces of work, this bowl below was the only one that I thought professional enough. As this is my first time using the saggar technique the process was very experimental. Though the slight markings of my combustible materials are present on the surface, the desired colouration failed to appear. I had used cabbage leaves and banana peel which should have left pinks and purples against the surface but I think too much oxygen got into the foil and oxidised rather than reduction.
Though the subtle smokey effect was quite aesthetically pleasing even though not quite the right colour pallet.
To get the fleshy skin tone surface that I like I have decided to fire using the saggar technique with combustibles. With the saggar I am firing my pieces in the raku kiln so i have decided that instead of making a slab built clay saggar I will use tin foil and wrap it around my pots which are a medium to large size so a clay saggar wouldn’t fit in the kiln and foil would save on a lot of space and firings.
The table above is almost a recipe for combustible materials. I would prefer to fire all natural materials mostly for safety but also for the subtle colourings that would be left behind from them burning against the pot rather than harsh vivid and bright markings that some chemicals would leave.
For this reaction to take place I will be wrapping the natural materials in with pot inside the tin foil saggar then placing that saggar in the raku kiln.
A part of our bowl project criteria was to give a 5 minute power point presentation to the curator for Llantarnam Grange. We were given the opportunity to give a short presentation to gain the idea what it is like to pitch your work ideas to a professional gallery. Each slide only had a minute for explantation.
The presentation we each had to give was a short 5 minute proposal of our ideas, our planning process and also how we plan to further develop our work to create a final outcome. We also had a short informative feedback.
This is a link to my proposal presentation:- Gbowls
I plan to create a fired figurative with a skin like surface decoration. I want the surface to not be an accurate representation of the skin but to still have a likeness, I want to capture the pinks, the peaches the blues and greens that all make up skin tone. I though the best way to capture these ideas is to saggar fire my forms. With different natural combustible materials I will be able to get these affects.
The water colours below are my rough design ideas for what I want the outcome firings to look like.
As I am creating figurative forms within my bowl project it is very important that I have a full understanding of the human body. The best way to do this it to attend life drawing sessions. Here are a couple of drawings.
I am primarily using hand building techniques to get the desired form. As I am looking at the figure to build a basic form I would like to use a technique that enables that organic feeling. I have chosen to coil build for this reason. Coil building is my preferred building method as I have been practicing making forms this way for the best part of a year now. though I wanted to develop my making technique even further so I have decided to create plaster moulds.
By creating plaster moulds I am able to make a sturdy base to build up on in coils. As my coils used in this process are only small (1cm thick) they are difficult to build up in awkward angles such as the wide slope towards the base.
The reason why I use very thin coils to create my pieces is for accuracy. I find that it is easier to build with smaller coils because I want to know exactly where I need to create a dip, fold or curve in the forms body and with the smaller coils I am able to see gradually how to place the coils so that this effect.