Time passes, pots spin off the wheel, water ebbs and flows…the Potomac River is spring-low again, and daily walks remind me how the subtle shifts, things we hardly notice, add up slowly to make the big changes. We age, islands erode, friendships deepen, and interests change. Yet we revisit certain places, friendships, habits….again and again, over time. So, the erosion of time brings me back to the computer, to decide how it is we continually make the tiny choices of how we present to the rest of the world.
The down-time…an important ingredient in being in touch with who we are, what we believe, and the directions we are looking. The pots I make are decidedly different from the ones I made three years ago, at the time of my last blog post. The way I approach clay has shifted. My take on the wood, the kiln, the studio process has slowed way down, with more eyes and hands, and less automatic actions. The Potomac River, Appalachian Trail, C&O Canal, and this little piece of home-land have been part of that shift. The pooch and the partner, other parts.
So stick with me. There is more to come. The exploration continues….
There’s nothing more soothing than homemade soup in the winter, which has me thinking about spoons, yep, ceramic spoons. Thanks to Gwendolyn Yoppolo, Lorna Meaden, and Kenyon Hanson for their spectacular, thoughtful spoons. Each one looks substantial, yet comfortable. No extremely thin and fragile handles here…with clay, what’s called for is a little substance.
So, by all means, get ye to the kitchen for a batch of miso soup with greens, black beans with citrus, or pureed carrot soup with cilantro. Kenyon’s ladles will help you get it out of the pot….
Sam Taylor, of Dog Bar Pottery, teapot
“Slow down, drink coffee from a handmade mug. Slow down when making the mug. Pay attention to the earthly processes that are involved and the full nature of what a mug has been and could be. Once again, it will be good for you and good for the planet. Buy from your local potter. Even if the handmade object is not utilitarian, it is a slow object. It still requires a stilling in the making and in the enjoying. Slow down; take it in on a sensual level. Add to that basic appeal whatever experience you have had with similar objects, be it resonance or the surprise of unexpected elements. Buy from a local artist. Attend your local gallery exhibitions. Clay sculptures, installations, conceptual works: they all ask us to slow down and pay attention, to examine our preconceptions.”
Chris Weaver, teapot with wooden handle
There’s nothing slower than a teapot on a chilly winter day. Teapots have been on my mind this month, what with winter and wood stoves and contemplation. These are some of my current mullings, and may they inspire you to pull out your favorite, boil up some hot water, and sip away…
Linda Sikora, teapot