The same but different

I have publicly admitted that I don't really like the process of throwing. It's too dirty! I like fooling with the stuff the next day to make it interesting.

I think a lot of people object to slip casting because there is this belief that everything will look the same. I could take these vases out of the mould trim the seams off and be done with it. Perfectly matching vases. That is not what y'all have come to expect from me and to be honest I wouldn't be happy with myself.  For me the slip casting is just like the throwing process.  It's the stretching of a canvas except I'm a clay man and not really a glaze/paint man so I need to make marks on the canvas to make it recognizable as a Tony Clennell piece. I don't think the glazing process has any kind of signature for me.
straight out of the mould

When I was a kid I had to take Penmanship classes. The teaching of cursive writing.  They were teaching us how to make letters and words flow together. I think Penmanship is important in the learning of making pots too except in this case it is doing repetition until you can do things the same consistently.
I'm pleased to tell ya my 3 month course in Tuscany is full. There were over 20 people from around the world apply for 7 spots and 20 others that applied for the one scholarship position. My assistant Franco Rampi and I will teach repetition studio pottery for the first 7 weeks. How to throw to a measure and produce a product line (Penmanship). All along there will be glaze theory, kiln firings, talks on form and function and the building of a strong foundation of ceramic knowledge. Then in the last 5 weeks it will be about the development of a signature( the importance of cursive writing in clay). Just like our signatures they are the same but different each time.  I still do marvel at watching a good thrower move clay so effortlessly.

I heard there was a kid at the local high school that was charging other kids $2 to write their name. They had never seen their names written.


Anonymous said…
Three months in Tuscany, you lucky dog!
Enjoy LA MERIDIANA, and mould those students by setting them free.
Anonymous said…
Oh please come teach a class at Mohawk College next summer for a week.
Anonymous said…
Good luck with your younger students, I wrote something down and a young man asked me what that was, he'd never seen handwriting before, they only teach them printing these days, because that's all they see on their computers and devices.

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