Poster Boy

Since I'm in The Hood I thought I should take my class out to visit Bill Van Gilder in his hood of Gapland, Maryland.
Bill and I share some history together. We both have a long and deep love of our former teacher and mentor Mick Casson.  We were both poster boys for Bailey Gas Kilns some 30+ years ago when our long hair and wash board stomachs were posed in front of our Bailey kilns. We both wrote for Clay Times magazine and have criss crossed the nation demonstrating our craft and embellishing the silences between smooth moves with tales of road.
Tonight, Bill kindly took me out for dinner and we bull shitted a few hours away enjoying each others insights into what got us here and how grateful we are that our stars aligned.
Bill was made famous by his DIY Network's Throwing Clay that did much for the success of the clay movement in America and made Bill's name a household name in US Ceramics. He can pack them in to a workshop with all his tricks that he learned over a lifetime of clay and in the preparation of the TV program. Teach to learn is my motto. If you are going to teach something you had better damn well know it.
Being born into the production pottery world, I have left it. I am so full of admiration for those that do it successfully. I told my class I am a man without a product line. I really don't know what I make anymore. When I get home I am going back to my bird houses with room temperature glazes and some slip casting. No thoughts on cups and such are invading my dreams. Ya, I need to make some and like making them but not now.  I'm going to enjoy the rest of the summer making whatever I want. I figure over 40 years of making pots has earned me that luxury.
Hey Billy, thanks for a nice day.
I think he has spotted a handsome man with a hat.

He does killer brushwork- look at the selection of  brushes.


gz said…
Love his pots and brushwork. A visit worth doing.
(from another mentored by MC !)
Anonymous said…
Please bring your hard earned wisdom and new found freedom to Mohawk College next summer for a week or more, we need you!
Tony Clennell said…
Is that you Duncan? Let's talk about next summer. I'm booking up already. cya when I get home. T

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