Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Clay Club: Reems Creek Pottery seeks non-production potter

Clay Club: Reems Creek Pottery seeks non-production potter: Here are the details from Rachel Smith: Reems Creek Pottery in Weaverville is looking for a non-production potter to join our studio begi...

Thursday, December 1, 2016

DMC2 "Cones"

This is a industrial type of cone that they put on shelves during the firing and after they put it in a micrometer and then read the heat work. 

Dan Dan Noodles with (Shiitake) Mushrooms Recipe

Dan Dan Noodles with (Shiitake) Mushrooms Recipe
(Rich Landau and Katey Jacoby)


Image result for dan dan noodles Rich landau and kate jacoby

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon Black vinegar
¼ cup sesame oil
½ teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1 teaspoon five-spice powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ pound shiitake mushroom caps (Or whatever mushrooms), sliced into 1/4-inch thin strips
24 ounces fresh ramen noodles (substitute 16 ounces dry noodles of choice)
½ cup chopped scallions (green parts only)

Dan Dan Sauce
¼ cup Sriracha
¼ cup tahini
¼ cup tamari
1 tablespoon sesame oil
¼ teaspoon chile oil
½ teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns
1 small pickled chile with oil, optional
¼ teaspoon sugar (skipped this)
¾ cup vegetable stock

Directions:
For the Dan Dan sauce
Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Always stir before using.
For the Noodles
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Combine the black vinegar, sesame oil, white pepper, garlic, ginger, five-spice powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Whisk until thoroughly combined.
Toss the mushrooms in the vinaigrette and place in a single layer on a sheet pan. Roast for 10 minutes or until crispy on the edges.
Warm the dan dan sauce in a small saucepan over low heat.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the noodles according to package instructions. When tender, drain them immediately and add to the dan dan sauce, tossing gently to coat evenly.

Transfer the noodles to serving bowls and top with the shiitake caps and scallions.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Mashiko Plates

Mashiko Plates


As always, I learned something during preparation for the Glazing Techniques class. I was trying to get the Fake Mashiko Glaze thick enough so that it wouldn't fade into the background and in doing so I determined that an Sp. Gr (Seicific gravity) of 170 was about right.

But that was so thick that after pouring it on the plate, it cracked when it dried. Although this was a nice surface design, I wanted to stop it, so I added some deflocculant (sodium silicate) to the glaze (it thinned a bit ) and that changed the pouring properties a lot and stopped the cracking. It only took a couple of drops in a cup of glaze.

Enjoy.  Thanks to Chet McLaughlin for our little chat!


FAKE MASHIKO Cone 10 Reduction
37.60    F-4 Feldspar                     
  8.90    Silica                             
  8.20  Redart Clay
35.00  Calcined Redart Clay                        
  5.70  Wollastonite                       
  4.30  Talc
  0.40  Bone Ash                     

  3.60    Red Iron Oxide 


Fake Mashiko is poured over a plate glazed with two coats of Hamada Rust.

Hamada Rust cone 10 

77.0 Custer Feldspar
0.1 Silica
6.2 Whiting
4.3 Kaolin
12.4 Gerstley Borate
7.5 Red Iron Oxide

Friday, November 4, 2016

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Black Bean Burger with Salsa Fresca and Avocado Crema



From: http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Black-Bean-Veggie-Burger


Black Bean Burger with Salsa Fresca and Avocado Crema
Helen Rosner

BLACK BEAN BURGER WITH SALSA FRESCA AND AVOCADO CREMA
Cumin, paprika, coriander, and both poblano and chipotle chiles lend their robust flavor to this earthy black bean burger.

Cumin, paprika, coriander, and both poblano and chipotle chiles lend their robust flavor to this earthy black bean burger. Dredged in cornmeal, it's a hearty base for a bright salsa fresca and smooth avocado crema.

MAKES 6 BURGERS
For the Black Bean Burgers
1⁄3 cup olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 poblano chiles, finely chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 chipotle in adobo sauce, finely chopped
1⁄2 cup breadcrumbs
2 eggs
2 (15-oz.) cans, black beans, rinsed, drained, and mashed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1⁄2 cup finely ground cornmeal
1⁄2 cup sour cream
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
2 avocados, halved, pitted, and peeled
Salsa Fresca
6 hamburger buns

Instructions
Make the burgers: Heat 3 tbsp. oil in a 12" skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, and cook, stirring, until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and poblanos, and cook, stirring, until soft and slightly caramelized, about 5 minutes. Add cumin, paprika, coriander, oregano, and chipotle chiles, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Transfer to a bowl and let cool slightly. Add breadcrumbs, beans, and eggs, season with salt and pepper, and mix well to combine. Divide mixture into six 5 1⁄2-oz. patties, about 3" wide x 1" thick; place on a plate and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until ready to use.

Make the avocado crema: Combine sour cream, lime juice, avocado, and salt and pepper in a blender, and purée until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap; store in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Heat 2 tbsp. oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Dredge 3 burgers in cornmeal, and cook, flipping once, until toasted on each side and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Repeat with remaining oil, burgers, and cornmeal.

Spread the bottom half of each bun with avocado crema, top with a burger and some Salsa Fresca and serve.

Note: Burgers may be formed and frozen, sealed, for up to one month. Defrost as necessary, dredge in cornmeal as described in step 3, and cook.


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Clay Club: Spruce Pine Potters Market October 8-9, 2016

Clay Club: Spruce Pine Potters Market October 8-9, 2016: Join us at the historic Cross Street Building in Spruce Pine, North Carolina October 8 and 9, 2016 10 am – 5 pm Saturday and Sun...

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Clay Club: Ceramics equipment and supplies for sale in Ashevi...

Clay Club: Ceramics equipment and supplies for sale in Ashevi...: David Samuel Harold has the following items for sale in Asheville (check back for photos which will be added soon): Wheel: 500 beam bal...

Friday, July 15, 2016

Karen Karnes, Remembered by Mark Shapiro

Karen Karnes passed peacefully at home on July 12th, 2016. She was a towering figure of the postwar studio pottery movement, pioneering salt-glazing in the 1960s and wood-firing in the 1980s. Her work opened undreamed of possibilities of expression for the handmade pot. For the many potters who knew her, she was a mentor whose work embodied the creative power and singular voice to which we all aspire—her life in complete harmony with her creative vision. Karen Karnes was our artist. Her outspoken honesty, wit, and physical grace were unique and irresistible. The solidarity and love for her colleagues and nurturing support for younger potters changed careers and lives. She participated in many of the significant cultural moments of her generation, placing handmade pottery squarely in the midst of more than one avant-garde setting. Karnes was known to speak her mind and lived by her own rules. In fact, early in her career, a customer who owned a gallery came in and asked the cost of a casserole that caught his eye at her Stony Point showroom. Hearing her response, he asked what the cost would be for a dozen. She told him that she would have to charge more for each one because she would not enjoy them as well, making so many. Her answer was like so much of how Karnes moved through the world: unforeseen.

Born in New York in 1925 to Jewish socialist activist parents, Karnes grew up in the Bronx Co-ops, the first worker-owned housing project in the United States, and attended the High School of Music and Art, where she began to make art. At Brooklyn College, she met a mentor, Serge Chermayeff, a European architect and designer from whom she imbibed a modernist approach, and also her future husband, David Weinrib, a ceramic sculptor at the time. Chermayeff led her to a Black Mountain College summer session with Bauhaus luminary Joseph Albers; with Weinrib she went to Strasburg, Pennsylvania, where she fell in love with clay as they lived in a tent while working at Design Technics, a firm that made architectural tile and lamps. After a year, the young couple left for Italy, where they lived in Sesto Fiorentino, a pottery town in Tuscany then known for its leftist political climate. Karnes transported her greenware to local kilns on her Vespa, and the locals were only too glad to accommodate this beautiful young American woman.

The precocious excellence of Karnes’s work was recognized early on, both by Chermayeff, who recommended her to Charles Harder at Alfred University, and in Italy by Gio Ponti, who published her work in his influential Domus magazine. When she returned to the U.S. in 1950 to attend Alfred as a special MFA student, her Double Vessel was selected for the Everson National Exhibition, where it won the prestigious Lord & Taylor Award.

At Alfred under Harder, Karnes was fully funded and had few responsibilities, yet with her master’s degree only a year away, she and Weinrib decamped to Black Mountain College, where they accepted positions as potters-in-residence among the heady avant-garde literary and artistic firmament of that place. (The list of significant artists at or passing through the college in those years goes on and on and includes: John Cage, Merce Cunningham, MC Richards, Robert Rauschenberg, Jack Tworkov, Franz Kline, Charles Olson.) While there, Karnes sold the pots she made through Southern Highland Craft Guild outlets and in New York at America House, the American Craft Council gallery across the street from the Museum of Modern Art. She and Weinrib were hosts at the 1952 pottery seminar featuring Shoji Hamada, Bernard Leach, Soetsu Yanagi, and Marguerite Wildenhain. Karnes describes watching Hamada serenely throwing, deeply in the work while Leach pedantically held forth, disparaging the quality of American clays and American pottery’s lack of “tap-roots.” Meanwhile, she said that she “breathed in Hamada’s spirit,” and while her pots never looked anything like his, they synthesize his Japanese attitude toward of materiality and spontaneity with her European modernist training in a uniquely elegant way. The following year, Karnes and Weinrib organized their own summer institute featuring Peter Voulkos, Warren MacKenzie, Daniel Rhodes.
In spite of the now acknowledged historic stature of creative and intellectual foment taking place at Black Mountain College, things were falling apart there in the 1950s, with serious financial troubles, low enrollments, and factional strife. In 1954 Karnes and Weinrib left with writer/artist M.C. Richards, pianist David Tudor, composer John Cage, and architect and patron Paul Williams and his wife, writer Vera Williams to found the Gate Hill Cooperative outside of New York City. This “Black Mountain for adults” became Karnes’s home for the next 25 years. Williams had acquired 100 acres in Stony Point in New York’s Rockland County and set out to build a creative living community. Karnes’s was the first house and studio to be built on the site, and she got right to work. There she made her sturdy functional pots, selling them out of her studio, as well as at America House and at Bonnier’s, a Scandinavian home furnishings store. She did some teaching, but mostly made her work, jealously protecting her time in the studio, where she was producing oil-fired reduction tableware. While Karnes’s utilitarian work of this period did well, the unique creative vision we have come to associate with her subsequent work was not yet apparent. Karnes gave voice to her originality in a series of press-molded and coiled architecturally-scaled planters, birdbaths, fireplaces, and chairs that she made while pregnant with her son Abel. These are some of her lesser-known works, but comparable work existed neither then nor even now. One of her stools from this period is the only work in the Noguchi Museum in New York that is not by the artist himself and was selected by Noguchi on a visit to her Gate Hill Studio.

In the early 1960s, Karnes, along with her student Mikhail Zakin and M.C. Richards, developed a flameware clay body that could go directly on the stove top and she began producing the casseroles that she would make alongside almost all the bodies of work that followed. This model of studio production, in which a popular, iconic, and useful pot undergirds and supports more experimental and evolving bodies of work is one that many studio potters have employed successfully since.
From there, Karnes moved toward new ways of firing and new bodies of work. In 1967 she led a workshop at Penland School, where a salt-kiln had recently been built. She was smitten and returned to build one of her own. Salt-firing is common now, but it was a novelty at the time. Her work took off and she began to make some of the most iconic studio ceramics of the era: cut-lidded jars, large scale vases, bowls, moving away from more modest tableware. She said, “[Salt-glazing] ... forced me into another place, and once the leap was made, I kept growing.” Her well-known salt-glazed jars with their straight-forward rising forms and striated facets of wire cuts on the top of the lids are among the most enduring and personal explorations of a single form in the field—recalling for me the serial bodies of work in the so called “mature styles” of modernist painters such as Rothko, Newman, etc.

Karnes first met British educator and artist Ann Stannard when the latter was leading a kiln-building workshop in 1969. Stannard became Karnes’s life partner, moving to Gate Hill the following year. (Karnes and Weinrib had divorced in the late 1950s, a few years after the birth of their son Abel.) Karnes lived openly with Ann and single-handedly raised her son on the income from her pottery sales, (as she had from the late 1950s); a show of grit, independence, and self-assurance that foreshadowed and paralleled second-wave feminist aspirations. With Ann’s appearance on the scene, Karnes’s work expanded significantly in scale and range. In the decade that followed she regularly showed with the 57th Street gallery of Hadler-Rodriguez and was recognized as one of the premier potters in the United States, pushing the context in which this genre of work was seen.
In 1974, Karnes began curating the Pottery Show and Sale to benefit the Art School at Old Church in Demarest, New Jersey, founded by Mikhail Zakin. The show was truly potter-centric: it brought together two dozen potters from around the country for a weekend of selling, visiting, and eating. Karnes insisted that the potters be well taken care of: housed by local volunteers, well-fed, and promptly paid. Many young potters got a career-changing boost when Karnes gave us her blessing by inviting us into this company of respected and established peers. I was among this fortunate cohort; it was a milestone for me that led to a deep connection to Karen and many of my dearest colleagues. Over the years, the celebration of community and delight in the camaraderie of new and old colleagues and seeing their ever-evolving work never waned. Now in its 42nd year, the show (co-curated since 2014, by Chris Gustin and Bruce Denhert) is a model for similar events across the country. Demarest-inspired benefit sales now take place in Washington, D.C. (Pots on the Hill) and Rochester, New York (Flower City Pottery Invitational), among others.

In the late 1970s, Karnes and Stannard left the communitarian bustle of Gate Hill for Danville, Vermont, and settled a few years later in the isolated township of Morgan in the Northeast Kingdom, some twenty miles south of the Canadian border. Karnes has called this her “time of retreat.” Not content to rest on the considerable acclaim of her salt-fired work, she built a large Bourry-box wood kiln more than twice the size of her Stony Point salt kiln and began making some of her most ambitious work: larger thrown vessels and asymmetrical forms that were coil-built over thrown bases. The pots often embraced color: blues, greens and yellows, subtly modified by the wood flame and ash. These works showed a new complexity, moving between commonplace polarities of pot/sculpture, landscape/body, male/female, spiritual/physical, and inside/outside. Several bodies of work followed: massive cut-lidded jars, pots with slits that ran up added hollow bases that might be larger than the body of the vessel itself, and forms with reaching “wings,” also divided by slits. Additionally, she produced forms with added necks, tulipieres, and boulder-like shapes with craters, some open to the inside, some not. Many of these works were massive, some up to three feet across.
During this period, Karnes showed at the Garth Clark Gallery on 57th Street, the most prestigious venue of the day (she had seven solo exhibitions between 1987 and 2000 and a retrospective in 2003), as well as other leading galleries such as Joanne Rapp, Habitat/Shaw, Esther Saks, Leedy-Voulkos, among others. She received multiple awards and honors over these years: A National Endowment for the Arts Visual Artist fellowship, The Society of Arts and Crafts (Boston) Medal of Excellence, Vermont Arts Council Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, The American Crafts Council’s Gold Medal, and the Watershed Legends Award. She was a Northern Clay Center Regis Master. She was made an Honorary Member of NCECA in 1980.

Karnes and Stannard suffered a kiln fire that burned their home and studio to the ground in 1998. She lost all her archives, notebooks and personal possessions, but they rebuilt on the site. Her resilience was a facilitated by her discovery of the love that the clay community held for her, as potters offered time, support, and pots for her new home as she rebuilt her life. She began a group of more modestly scaled works, often groupings of two or three joined or freestanding vessels that expressed a lightness and relational intimacy that was new, and fired them in a rebuilt small salt kiln. As she moved into her eighties, her work with groupings became more complex, involving multiple and joined altered thrown volumes, agglomerated into biomorphic masses. Many of these works from the mid-2000s onward were fired in Joy Brown’s anagama kiln in Kent, Connecticut, and in my salt-wood kiln in Massachusetts. She showed during these years with the Ferrin Gallery and more recently with the Lacoste Gallery. She stopped working in clay a few years before her passing as she became less able to physically work with the material.

A film by Lucy Phenix, Don’t Know, We’ll See: The Work of Karen Karnes, was released in 2005, and Karnes was celebrated by a traveling retrospective exhibition curated by Peter Held in 2010–2012 with an accompanying book A Chosen Path: The Ceramic Art of Karen Karnes (University of North Carolina Press, 2010) that I had the honor of editing. The show originated at the Arizona State University Museum Ceramic Research Center, and travelled to the Asheville Art Museum (North Carolina), Currier Museum of Art (New Hampshire), the Racine Art Museum (Wisconsin), and the Crocker Art Museum (California).

Karnes never was institutionally affiliated. She lived her communitarian politics while fiercely protecting her creative privacy. Blazing her own trail, she willfully dreamed into being the very landscape through which she moved, refusing fixed identities, rigid categories, and conventional expectations. She was making it all up and living it in ways that many could hardly imagine, much less embody; her creative power and courage inspired nearly universal admiration and wonderment. What Mikhail Zakin said of her friend speaks for many: she lived “with total integrity to her value system. That has been a great lesson for me—that it can be done, that you can live that way.”
While she didn’t often speak about her motivation or creative process, they served Karen as inexorable forces deep within her being, dictating the logic of her life. “The pots kind of grow from themselves,” she said. “It’s a feeling. The forms will extend themselves—or contract. I feel my forms live in my body, on my breath.” Karnes indeed felt herself a vessel, a vehicle for the creative voice within her. On another occasion she described it slightly differently, “It’s as if I am moving at the bottom of the ocean...in a big slow current that keeps going—that doesn’t mean it doesn’t change ... but I’m just moving along.”

Karen Karnes now has moved along to another place. She did so as she always did, in her serene and purposeful way. She remains with us in her work, whose power and beauty is hard-fired for as long as anything else is on this earth. She remains with us in her legacy of love, justice, and of support for our enduring community. She remains with the many of us whom she illuminated with her fierce, bright light.


Karen Karnes's wheel, built in Italy in 1950, photographed by Robert George in 1977.
Photo appears in Christopher Benfey's wonderful essay in "A Chosen Path: The Ceramic Art of Karen Karnes" 2010, edited by Mark Shapiro

From NCECA.net

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Village Potters are Selling LAGUNA CLAYS IN ASHEVILLE NC !!

The Village Potters, Asheville, NC is now a Laguna Clay distributor! We are extremely excited about sharing their clays with you! Check out our order form and/or website for more details!

Please share this information with anyone that may be interested!

All clay orders are available for pick up at The Village Potters, River Arts District, Asheville, NC OR shipped to specified location for additional shipping fee.

Next order deadline is Friday, July 15th at 5pm.

Small or Large quantities available!


ORDER NOW!


For more details click the link below:
http://thevillagepotters.com/laguna-clays-at-the-village-potters/


For questions or more info call Lindsey at (828) 253-2424.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Glaze Testing Workshop at Touchstone in Farmington Pennsylvania- September 9 -12, 2016



Three Day Cone 6 Ceramic Glaze Testing Weekend Workshop


This is a 3-day hands-on Cone 6 glaze testing workshop is designed to show students how to test a base recipe and get various colors. On Friday we will be preparing test tiles with a base glaze and ten colorant variations. We will fire on Saturday in the cone 6 electric kilns and then on Sunday we will discuss the results when they are unloaded from the kiln.


The workshop will also be a general overview of ceramic glazes, focusing on but not limited to cone 6 glazes. We will discuss cones, kilns, firing dynamics and principles as well as applying those principles to various firing cycles. This will lead us into some basic classifications of glazes, likeash, celadon, temmoku, etc. It will be conducted in a casual question and answer format which will drive the content of the weekend.

Glazes will be discussed in a practical and easy to understand dialogue designed to help potters gain an understanding of glazes, firing and glazing.

We will discuss how and why each type of glaze works and how you can achieve them, how to adjust your glazes and how to find new ones. We will discuss glazes from John’s new book: “The Complete Guide to Mid-Range Glazes: Glazing and Firing at cone 4 – 7”, but will go into more detail than the book allowed.

Friday September 9
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Saturday/Sunday
9:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Monday 9:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Beginner-Intermediate | $348


http://www.touchstonecrafts.org/Ceramics


Touchstone Center for Crafts
1049 Wharton Furnace Road
Farmington, PA 15437



T: 724.329.1370
T: 800.721.0177

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Ceramics Job at Northen Kentucky

The Spatial Arts Program at Northern Kentucky University will be hiring a full-time non-tenure track instructor in Ceramics for Fall 2016. I apologize for the lateness of this announcement, but we received approval for the position today.  If you have former students or know of someone who would be interested please share this with them.  The Human Resources website will be activated in a couple of days to accept application materials.

Thank you,

Steven Finke


UPDATED June 9, 2016
Ceramics Lecturer Position - Job Listing  

Purpose of Position  The Visual Arts program in the School of the Arts at Northern Kentucky University invites applications for a full time one year non-tenure track lecturer position in Ceramics beginning August 2016.  Ceramics is part of a Spatial Arts area and offers both a sculptural and a vessel approach to using clay.  We offer BA and BFA degree tracks that focus on developing skills, diverse use of materials and conceptual development, providing the student fluent expression of their artistic vision. Established in 1968, NKU is a 15,000 student, nationally recognized, metropolitan university located seven miles from Cincinnati, Ohio.  Greater Cincinnati offers an outstanding quality of life, a vibrant arts community, and an affordable cost of living.  NKU is committed to active engagement with the Northern Kentucky /Greater Cincinnati region of over two million people. 
 

Primary Responsibilities  The successful candidate will be expected to teach three classes per semester and serve on program committees.  Candidates should have the ability to teach all levels of Ceramics, including clay and glaze formulation, as well as integrate into the Spatial Arts area.  The candidate may be needed to teach occasional courses in foundations.  Further responsibilities include ceramic studio management, student advising and portfolio review.  Spatial Arts is located in a separate facility from the main Art building and includes a wheel throwing and handbuilding areas, a glaze room, a clay mixing room, gas, electric and wood fired kilns. Also housed in the facility are a complete wood shop, metal shop, and a foundry.  Spatial Arts has a full time technician.

Qualifications  Candidates are required to have an MFA degree in ceramics or related discipline and an active exhibition record.  University level teaching experience is preferred.  Candidates should be able to demonstrate knowledge of ceramic techniques and processes, be well versed in contemporary and historic issues in ceramics and visual art.
 
Questions regarding the use of this website should be directed to the Human Resources Department at jobs@nku.edu.  Questions regarding the nature of the position should be directed to the search committee chair, Steven Finke at finke@nku.edu.  For additional information on NKU, visit http://www.nku.edu and http://art.nku.edu
 

Applications will be reviewed beginning June 30, 2016
Applicants will need to upload the following documents in PDF format, 9MB maximum size for each:
1. Cover Letter
2. CV
 
3. Portfolio - 20 images of personal work with image list
4. Artist Statement
5. Teaching Philosophy
6. Names and contact information for three references
7. Portfolio of student work (if available) – 10 images with list
Any candidate who is offered this position will be required to go through a pre-employment criminal background check as mandated by state law.
 

Minimum Education  MFA

This job announcement and application details are due to go live in the next few days.  You will find the announcement and application portal on the following Northern Kentucky University Human Resources website under Full-Time Faculty: 

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Clay Club: Recap: June Clay Club at Reems Creek Pottery

Clay Club: Recap: June Clay Club at Reems Creek Pottery: Thank you Rachel Smith, Jim McDowell and everyone at Reems Creek Pottery for hosting an awesome Clay Club! Rachel told us a little of t...

Monday, June 6, 2016

Clay Club: Ceramic equipment and property with ceramic studio...

Clay Club: Ceramic equipment and property with ceramic studio...: Hank Goodman is selling his property in Arden, NC, and it includes a ceramic studio. Hank says it would be a great place for a younger pott...

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Great article on bisque

An Oxidized Bisque Firing by Steve Davis / Aardvark Clay & Supplies

https://kazegama.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/bisquefiring.pdf

Many clay and glaze faults in ceramic wares are caused by incomplete burnout (oxidation) of carbon during the bisque firing. This can be attributed to a kiln operator’s lack of understanding about the chemistry that occurs during this first firing.
Carbon Many materials used in ceramics contain carbonaceous matter, including organic carbon and binders, and inorganic carbon from clays, whiting, and dolomite. This carbon must be burned out (oxidized) during the bisque firing to ensure the best results possible in glaze firings. Bloating, black coring, pin holing, blisters, and poor color development are all the result of incomplete carbon burnout. To achieve the complete burnout of carbon (oxidation), you must have the following elements in place: oxygen, time, and temperature.
Oxygen Oxygen is the most critical element. Without sufficient oxygen in the kiln chamber, carbon in the clay will have difficulty forming carbon dioxide and vacating the clay as a gas. If oxygen is in short supply, carbon will take oxygen from oxygen sources including red iron oxide (Fe2O3) that comes from ball clays, kaolins, fireclays, and particularly red clays. When carbon atoms strip oxygen atoms from red iron oxide (Fe2O3), the red iron oxide is converted into black iron oxide (FeO), a powerful flux.  (Fe2O3 + C  4FeO + CO2 ) Starting at 1650F, the walls of the wares become progressively sealed by the fluxing action of the black iron oxide. When this same clay is then fired for a second time in a glaze firing to maturation, it can be over-vitrified and soft from the fluxing action throughout the clay body. Gases that are trapped in the soft clay wall will expand to form pockets (Bloating).
In low fire ceramics, temperatures are not high enough for bloating or melting to occur, but the carbon can cause faults such as black coring in the clay wall, pinholes, blisters, and poor color development in glazes and underglazes.
Time
Carbon burnout requires time for the oxygen to penetrate the ware and form carbon dioxide gas. Much thicker pieces, dense loads, and high iron clays require substantially more firing time for proper oxidation of the carbon. Sometimes the carbon content of the ware can be much higher than normal due to changes in raw materials. This increased carbon content can cause problems that would not normally occur with established firing procedures.
Temperature Organic carbon burns out (oxidizes) from 300F-600F. Inorganic carbon from clays and ceramic materials burns out (oxidizes) from 1292F-1652F. Sulfur in various forms will oxidize from 1292F-2102°F. Kilns must be well vented throughout these temperature ranges, especially from 1292F-1652F and the firing should proceed slowly through this temperature range to allow oxygen time to oxidize all of the carbon in the clay.
Venting Electric Kilns Just because a kiln is electric does not mean that it is oxidizing during firing. There are too many carbon sources coming from clays and glazes. Oxygen must be supplied to the kiln through venting by one of two methods. One method is to install a kiln vent, which is the most effective way to introduce oxygen. The other method is to prop the lid open at ¾” and remove all of the peephole plugs. This venting should be done from the start of the firing and continued until the inside of the kiln chamber has achieved a bright, orange glow. A good prop for the lid is a 10” x 10” x ¾” kiln shelf. If placed on the rim of the kiln wall directly below the lid handle, it will shield the lid handle from the heat and corrosive vapors from the kiln. After a bright orange glow is achieved (1500F), the lid can be closed and all of the peepholes left open. The lid is closed at 1500°F because any hotter will overheat your control box. (Get a kiln vent…………)
 Bisque Firing with a Gas Kiln
In a gas kiln, oxygen supply is a little trickier. Gas fired kilns are basically a box where air and fuel are mixed and ignited. The air-fuel ratio is what we are concerned with. In natural draft kilns, fuel comes through the body of the natural draft burner under pressure. This flow of gas entrains 50% of the air requirement (primary air) through the burner. Air and fuel are mixed in the burner and the kiln chamber. The other 50% of the required air comes through the burner ports (secondary air). The damper on both up draft and down draft kilns controls this secondary air and the atmosphere of the kiln.
To achieve a reliable, oxidized bisque firing with a gas kiln, a kiln chart that list the gas pressure and corresponding damper settings, must be employed. As the kiln temperature increases, a greater expansion of the gases occurs in the kiln chamber. The air-fuel ratio will change towards a reduced atmosphere (lack of oxygen), due to the greater pressure of the fuel verses the pressure of the air.
In order to guarantee that there is always ample oxygen supplied to the wares, a firing chart should be established at a temperature equal to, or above the bisque temperature. It is critical to use repeatable methods of measuring the gas pressure and damper settings. Start by cleaning out the kiln, burner ports, and burners. Check the orifices for spider nests, and inspect the flue area for obstructions. Debris in the burner port can cause an area of local reduction within the kiln that may not be noticed during a firing. Next, install a gas gauge between the burners and the gas control valve. Make marks indicating the location of the damper openings of inch or half inch increments. Fire the kiln empty up to cone 04 and make notations on a kiln chart. Notations should include “time, temperature, gas pressure, damper setting, and comments”.
At cone 04, note the maximum amount of gas pressure used. Then push the damper in until a flame is visible in the damper area. If the damper area is not visible, observe the flame coming out of the peephole. Now incrementally back out the damper until the flame disappears. It may take a minute for the kiln to adjust to the new atmosphere. A peek-a-boo flame is a neutral flame and the kiln is not quite in oxidation. Once the kiln is in an oxidizing mode, make a note of the damper setting that corresponds with the gas pressure reading. Turn down the gas pressure a ½” and follow the same damper adjustments to establish the corresponding damper settings for the lower gas pressure readings. Continue this process until you are down to one inch of gas pressure.   This chart is created at a temperature that guarantees your kiln atmosphere will be oxidizing at lower temperatures. It is best to make the kiln chart at night when the flame is more visible. Once this chart is established, it should be easy to achieve a well, oxidized bisque.
Remember that “oxygen, time, and temperature” must be taken into account when bisque firing.
Kiln Chart
Time Temp Gas Damper Comments                                  
    Steve’s Bisque Firing Program for a Skutt KM Controller
   Controller Display                        Push              Push
“PROG”        1  Enter
“SEGS”       6  Enter
“RA 1”       60  Enter “F 1”    180  Enter      (Water forms steam at 212F) “HLD 1”   12.00  Enter      (Variable depending on water content            and thickness of the wares)                  “RA 2”                 200  Enter “F 2”     600  Enter      (Organic carbon burnouts from 300-600°F) “HLD 2”       0  Enter
“RA 3”                 240  Enter “F 3”                1300  Enter    (1300°F is start of inorganic carbon burnout) “HLD 3”        0  Enter
“RA 4”                    60  Enter “F 4”                 1650  Enter    (Inorganic carbon burnouts from 1300-1650°F) “HLD 4”         0  Enter
“RA 5”                  360  Enter    (At this point you can push the “Cone Table” button, “F 5”                 1850  Enter    enter cone 04, and press “Enter”.) This will allow you  “HLD 5”         0  Enter       avoid a 6th segment.
“RA 6”                   108  Enter “F 6”                  1922  Enter    (Cone 04 Bisque temperature is 1922°F with a  “HLD 6”          0  Enter       rate of climb of 108 degrees per hour)
“ALRM”                 9999  Enter
“IDLE”    START
A segment (SEGS) includes a rate (RA), a temperature (F), and a hold (HLD) setting. Alarm and Delay can be set after you have inputted a program.
The rate (RA) is the rate of temperature climb per hour. The (F or C) is the temperature that a segment will fire to. The hold (HLD) is how long the temperature will be held for that segment.
Heat Transfer
1. Radiation: When electromagnetic waves travel through space, they transfer heat to objects they come into contact with. The sun and kiln elements produce these waves. Radiation is the primary source of heat in electric and gas kilns. 2. Conduction: The transfer of heat between substances that are in direct contact with each other.  3. Convection: Heat transfer caused by the up and down movement of gases and liquids. Flues gases moving up a kiln chimney is an example of convection.
Pyrometric Cones measure heat-work, not a set temperature. If you fire to Cone 04 at a rate of 108 degrees an hour, Cone 04 will drop at around 1922F. If you fire to Cone 04 at a rate of 270 degrees per hour, Cone 04 will drop at a higher temperature of 1940F. 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Clay Club: Alex Glover presentation on the Spruce Pine Mining...

Don't miss this great presentation boys and girls!!!!





Clay Club: Alex Glover presentation on the Spruce Pine Mining...: Alex Glover will present a talk titled, "The Spruce Pine Mining District -- Before Humans Arrived" at the Historic Courthouse in...

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Campana Clear /Grey tests with variations in kaolin

Here are some images of a test I ran with the glaze Campana Clear cone 6 Glaze. There was a question about this glaze effect Scott Chatenever observed where it was getting milky with the colorants.

There was a suggestion that kaolin was at the source of the milkiness so I decide to run a test. I mixed up the recipe and left out the kaolin and then just added a bunch of different ones I had on hand. They are EPK, Ball Clay, McNamee, New Zealand, Grolleg, Peerless #3, Standard, Super Standard, Dixie, and D'Arvor kaolins. Each of these have various amounts of iron, titanium and other impurities and they vary in amounts of Al/Si so it is hard to isolate one material when testing.

I tested these on test tiles in cone 6 electric E1 firing cycle.

The claybodies are Frost, P5, Redstone, and 266. All this is listed in each image.

The colorants I used were the ones for the Campana Grey - 0.15% Cobalt carbonate, 0.6% Copper Carbonate, and 1.8% Manganese carbonate.

(Remember that these were quick tests and not definitive, and there were some problems with mixing as can be seen on D'Arvor tests with white specks and in color set with some streaking because of no sieving.)

What I learned:
  • Most of the clear glazes had a yellow cast from the iron in the kaolins, even though it is only a small amount. But the CLEAREST one was with New Zealand Kaolin. It was the clearest glaze I have ever seen!   This may translate to other recipes ...getting a clearer CLEAR glaze. Best on Frost clay.  The Grolleg was the next clearest. [remember that this particular recipe has low iron so if you use Custer or other feldspar with iron the clay may not help as much.]
  • The next most amazing thing was the OM-4 set (which is a ball clay but I wanted to see what it would do since it and EPK is often used in glazes) This set was the most milky and it is very visible in both the clear set and colorant set. Probably caused by impurities in ball clay. ( it has  a lot of iron and titanium compared to kaolins and it is quite a variable material!)
  • There was a great difference when I added two kaolins, Peerless #3 and Dixie which required me to add  more water than the rest. They are made to have high surface area for rubber manufacturing. You can google the kaolin name and "digital fire" and a description will come up.(e.g. Dixie digital fire).    This cause come application variation because it was thicker.
  • The colorant test had several with big pinholes/bubbles which are presumable from copper carbonate or manganese dioxide gassing off. (I have observed this in other colorant tests.)
  • Not sure if it is visible the the Frost clay in the two colorant tests were all very clear but the test on the P-5 were almost all milky with blue and white flecks. So the clay body (P-5 is a domestic porcelain and I don't know the recipe but presume it contains EPK and some ball clay) with the colorants is clearly causing this effect. You can see this in the thickest drippy spots toward the bottom. So the effect Scott was seeing is possibly related to his clay body and the colorants. (this is not really visible in the clear set on the same two bodies.)








Campana Clear /Grey with D'Arvor Kaolin and colorants (Detail showing milky blue streaking and white flecks. )





































Sunday, April 24, 2016

Faux Pho from Budget Bytes

Quickie Faux Phở - The next best to the real thing when you're short on time. BudgetBytes.com

http://www.budgetbytes.com/2016/04/quickie-faux-pho/

INGREDIENTS

SOUP
6 cups chicken stock* $0.78
½ Tbsp five spice blend $0.15
1 cup cooked chicken, shredded or chopped $1.50
8oz. wide rice noodles $1.75
TOPPINGS
1 jalapeño $0.14
1 lime $0.50
2 green onions $0.20
¼ bunch cilantro $0.20
Sriracha to taste $0.15
Salt and pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes if you like it more spicy
Added peanuts
Hoisin sauce to taste $0.15

INSTRUCTIONS
Add the chicken stock, five spice blend, and chicken pieces to a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the noodles and continue to boil until tender** (about 4-5 minutes).
While the noodles are boiling, slice the jalapeño and green onions, and cut the lime into wedges.
Spoon the broth, noodles, and chicken into four bowls. Top with a couple wedges of lime, a few slices of jalapeño and green onion, and a few sprigs of fresh cilantro. Serve with sriracha and hoisin on the side.

NOTES
*Use the best broth or stock available. Since my stock was made with scraps and nearly impossible to estimate the cost, I used the price of the store bought broth that I usually use (Better Than Bouillon).

**If you plan to store your soup in the refrigerator, cook and store the noodles separately from the broth. To serve, just place some noodles in the bottom of each bowl and ladle the hot broth over top.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Chocolate Babka






INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE DOUGH:
½ cup/118 milliliters whole milk
1 package (1/4 ounce/7 grams)active dry yeast
⅓ cup/67 grams granulated sugar, plus a pinch
4 ¼ cups/531 grams all-purpose flour, more as needed
1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest(optional)
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
4 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
10 tablespoons/140 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing bowls and pans
FOR THE FUDGE FILLING:
½ cup/100 grams granulated sugar
¾ cup/177 milliliters heavy creamor half-and-half
Pinch kosher salt
6 ounces/170 grams extra bittersweet chocolate, preferably between 66 and 74 percent cocoa, coarsely chopped
8 tablespoons/112 grams/1 stickunsalted butter, diced, at room temperature
2 teaspoons/10 milliliters vanilla extract
FOR THE CHOCOLATE STREUSEL:
½ cup/60 grams all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons/45 grams granulated sugar
1 ½ tablespoons/11 grams cocoa powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
4 ½ tablespoons/64 grams unsalted butter, melted
⅓ cup/60 grams mini semisweet chocolate chips
FOR THE SYRUP:
⅔ cup/135 grams granulated sugar


PREPARATION
Prepare the dough: In a small saucepan or a bowl in the microwave, warm the milk until it’s lukewarm but not hot (about 110 degrees). Add yeast and a pinch of sugar and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, until slightly foamy.

In an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, or in a food processor, mix together flour, 1/3 cup sugar, the salt, the vanilla, the lemon zest (if using) and the nutmeg. (If you don't have a mixer or processor, use a large bowl and a wooden spoon.) Beat or process in the yeast mixture and eggs until the dough comes together in a soft mass, about 2 minutes. If the dough sticks to the side of the bowl and doesn’t come together, add a tablespoon more flour at a time until it does, beating very well in between additions.

Add half the butter and beat or pulse until the dough is smooth and elastic, 3 to 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed. Beat in the rest of the butter and continue to beat or pulse until the dough is smooth and stretchy, another 5 to 7 minutes. Again, if the dough sticks to the sides of the bowl, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Butter a clean bowl, form the dough into a ball and roll it around in the bowl so all sides are buttered. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place (inside of a turned-off oven with the oven light on is good) until it puffs and rises, about 1 to 2 hours. It may not double in bulk but it should rise.

Press the dough down with your hands, re-cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight (or, in a pinch, for at least 4 hours, but the flavor won't be as developed).

Prepare the filling: In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, cream and salt. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sugar completely dissolves, about 5 minutes. Scrape mixture into a bowl. Stir in chocolate, butter and vanilla until smooth. Let cool to room temperature. Filling can be made up to a week ahead and stored, covered, in the fridge. Let come to room temperature before using.
Prepare the streusel: In a bowl, stir together flour, sugar, cocoa powder and salt. Stir in melted butter until it is evenly distributed and forms large, moist crumbs. Stir in the chocolate chips. Streusel can be prepared up to 3 days ahead and stored, covered, in the fridge.

Prepare the syrup: In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 2/3 cup/158 milliliters water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then simmer for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves.
Butter two 9-inch loaf pans, then line with parchment paper, leaving 2 inches of paper hanging over on the sides to use as handles later.

Remove dough from refrigerator and divide in half. On a floured surface, roll one piece into a 9-by-17-inch rectangle. Spread with half the filling (there's no need to leave a border). Starting with a long side, roll into a tight coil. Transfer the coil onto a dish towel or piece of plastic wrap and stick it in the freezer for 10 minutes. Repeat with the other piece of dough.

Slice one of the dough coils in half lengthwise to expose the filling. Twist the halves together as if you were braiding them, then fold the braid in half so it’s about 9 inches long. Place into a prepared pan, letting it curl around itself if it’s a little too long for the pan. Cover loosely with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until puffy (it won’t quite double). 

Alternatively, you can cover the pans with plastic wrap and let them rise in the refrigerator overnight; bring them back to room temperature for an hour before baking.

When you're ready to bake, heat the oven to 350 degrees. Use your fingers to clump streusel together and scatter all over the tops of the cakes. Transfer to oven and bake until a tester goes into the cakes without any rubbery resistance and comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. The cakes will also sound hollow if you unmold them and tap on the bottom. An instant-read thermometer will read between 185 and 210 degrees.

As soon as the cakes come out of the oven, use a skewer or paring knife to pierce them all over going all the way to the bottom of the cakes, and then pour the syrup on top of the cakes, making sure to use half the syrup for each cake.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before serving.

Cinnamon Babka


http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1018045-chocolate-babka

I adapted the chocolate babka recipe and just used the dough and put on butter, cinnamon and sugar to make Cinnamon Babka.

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE DOUGH:
½ cup/118 milliliters whole milk
1 package (1/4 ounce/7 grams)active dry yeast
⅓ cup/67 grams granulated sugar, plus a pinch
4 ¼ cups/531 grams all-purpose flour, more as needed
1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest(optional)
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
4 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
10 tablespoons/140 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing bowls and pans

FOR THE CINNAMON FILLING-  for each loaf:
3 Tbls  granulated sugar
2 Tsp cinnamon


PREPARATION
Prepare the dough: In a small saucepan or a bowl in the microwave, warm the milk until it’s lukewarm but not hot (about 110 degrees). Add yeast and a pinch of sugar and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, until slightly foamy.

In an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, or in a food processor, mix together flour, 1/3 cup sugar, the salt, the vanilla, the lemon zest (if using) and the nutmeg. (If you don't have a mixer or processor, use a large bowl and a wooden spoon.) Beat or process in the yeast mixture and eggs until the dough comes together in a soft mass, about 2 minutes. If the dough sticks to the side of the bowl and doesn’t come together, add a tablespoon more flour at a time until it does, beating very well in between additions.

Add half the butter and beat or pulse until the dough is smooth and elastic, 3 to 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed. Beat in the rest of the butter and continue to beat or pulse until the dough is smooth and stretchy, another 5 to 7 minutes. Again, if the dough sticks to the sides of the bowl, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Butter a clean bowl, form the dough into a ball and roll it around in the bowl so all sides are buttered. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place (inside of a turned-off oven with the oven light on is good) until it puffs and rises, about 1 to 2 hours. It may not double in bulk but it should rise.

Press the dough down with your hands, re-cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight (or, in a pinch, for at least 4 hours, but the flavor won't be as developed).

Remove dough from refrigerator and divide in half. On a floured surface, roll one piece into a 9-by-17-inch rectangle. Spread 2 Tbls of melted butter on the dough. Then sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar mixture over the entire surface. (add more or less - cinnamon or sugar depending on taste) Starting with a long side, roll into a tight coil. Transfer the coil onto a dish towel or piece of plastic wrap and stick it in the freezer for 10 minutes. Repeat with the other piece of dough.

Slice one of the dough coils in half lengthwise to expose the filling. Twist the halves together as if you were braiding them, then fold the braid in half so it’s about 9 inches long. Place into a prepared pan, letting it curl around itself if it’s a little too long for the pan. Cover loosely with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until puffy (it won’t quite double). 

Alternatively, you can cover the pans with plastic wrap and let them rise in the refrigerator overnight; bring them back to room temperature for an hour before baking.

When you're ready to bake, heat the oven to 350 degrees. Use your fingers to clump streusel together and scatter all over the tops of the cakes. Transfer to oven and bake until a tester goes into the cakes without any rubbery resistance and comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. The cakes will also sound hollow if you unmold them and tap on the bottom. An instant-read thermometer will read between 185 and 210 degrees.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Cone 6 Ceramic Glaze Discussion/ Weekend in Central Pennsylvania-Montoursville

Got a few spots left open for this weekend workshop next weekend (April 29 - May 1, 2016)



April 29 – May 1, 2016
CENTERED EARTH CLAY ART STUDIO AND GALLERY

A Visiting Artist Workshop with John Britt

Cone 6 Glaze Discussion/Weekend

Tuition: $250

This workshop will be a general overview of ceramic glazes, focusing on but not limited to cone 6 glazes. It is designed for beginner to intermediate potters. We will discuss cones, kilns, firing dynamics and principles as well as applying those principles to various firing cycles. This will lead us into some basic classifications of glazes, like ash, celadon, temmoku, etc. We will discuss how and why each type of glaze works and how you can achieve them, how to adjust your glazes and how to find new ones. We will discuss glazes from my new book: “The Complete Guide to Mid-Range Glazes: Glazing and Firing at cone 4 – 7”, but will go into more detail than the book allowed.

There is no firing with this workshop but John will bring tiles samples from his book as well as pots.

Slide Talk Friday 6-8 p.m.

Glaze discussion Sat and Sunday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

For registration contact :
Kathy Görg
111 North Montour Street
Montoursville, PA 17754
1.570-666-3159
http://www.centeredearth.com/workshops.html