Project 1-I wasn’t really sure what to start, so I turned to an image that had resonated with me recently. I made these castings of my mouth for the last show I had in Portland. Since I have the molds with me, I started casting mouths. Then I made more molds and set a goal of casting 1000 mouths. The purpose is two-fold-maybe three-fold. The grouping of the mouths will appear in the show as part of an installation (which is still taking shape but certainly carries forward the theme of revolution). The group of mouths will also serve me as test tiles as I make glazes and clay bodies, formulate new ones and try them in all of these great atmospheric kilns. The tiles are numbered so that I can record each test and discover the surfaces I like most. Because each of the 1000 will be treated differently, it makes them individuals. The act of pressing them into the molds feels symbolic, as though I am encouraging their protest. The part I am enjoying most right now is the making. I have over 200 mouths made at this time and it is the obsessive reason I have to get to the studio early and stay late. Each group takes a while. It’s the waiting time in between that I make the other stuff.
Project 2-I showed the native clay samples before and now I have some firing results. I have chosen wisely! 9 of the samples can be used as high fire clay with only a little addition of ingredients to make it more plastic. All of the samples changed color dramatically as you can see. Some of the raw colors and some calcined/low fired colors will be retained for chalk pastels. Two of the clay samples melted completely substance and so they will be useful in glaze. The rock sample from the Crazy Horse Memorial (12) melted some. It may be useful in glaze as well. I still have not decided what image/images to make with the clay. It will likely be figurative. I’m thinking it/they should relate to landscape or passage of time. Perhaps wall work.
Project 3 and 4ish-It just makes me happy to make figures and molds. I was keeling inspired to make a nice mold by a fellow resident who’s molds look like sculptures. I sculpted a new figure, sort of an androgynous one. I thought I might be done with this kind of sleepy and meditative bust, but it still resonates with me. I’m not really sure what the big columnar piece is about yet, I have been interested in making more texture molds (including fox paw print molds) and I have high hopes for a large, messy figure that sort of boils upward. It is a bit inspired by John Jessiman’s large, loose abstractions. We’ll see how that goes.
Project, oh who’s counting-I am also making some vessels. I’m still struggling with the clay I made and the textures I like to use. The humidity and heat also present challenges to the way I am used to working in the Pacific Northwest. My thrown pots are already looking better than at home, which is not saying much.