With the fall firing and Open House in the rearview mirror, and winter fast approaching, I plan to hunker down in the studio and get work made for the spring firings. I'll have a new assistant arriving in late February to stay for 3 months. I'll be traveling to Cork Ireland for a firing workshop with Marcus O'Mahoney in mid March, then over to Germany, outside of Munich to give a workshop with Ralf Burger. More info on that below. Soon after returning, Bruce Denhert will arrive to lead a firing workshop from late April into May. These will all be great events. If interested in joining any, please contact me.
Further information below on all of these workshops.
March 16 - 18. Firing Workshop, St. Patrick's Day Weekend at Marcus Mahoney Studio in Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland. We will be firing his small anagama.
March 23-25. Hands-On making workshop at the Ralf Burger Studio in Bavaria, near Munich.
Late April to early May. I will be hosting Bruce Denhert for both a making workshop and firing workshop at the Fieldwork Studio in Sasayama, Japan. Details are below. This will be a very unique once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with Bruce and myself in the Japanese countryside. Not to be missed! Below are the details on this workshop
June 22 to 26. 'Firing up 'The Noborigama' Peters Valley School of Craft. Layton, New Jersey. USA.
Peters Valley is one of the premier craft schools in North America and I'm honored to be returning for my fourth workshop at Peters Valley, and my second to fire the noborigama. This will be a great firing and a lot of fun.
Please contact me for further information on any of these workshops.
Firing the Oki-doki Anagama in Germantown, NY, July 2017.
I was honored to, once again, be asked to lead the firing of Susan Kotulak's Oki-doki kiln. This is possibly my favorite kiln to fire. From front to back, floor to ceiling; there isn't a bad spot in the kiln. It's easy to fire, the temp climbs in reduction, and when it stalls, a simple tweak of the damper get's it going to where you want. But like any firing, the kiln is only half the story. Susan and her husband Ron Sencer have created such a warm and enjoyable environment. The stoking crew was a great mix of a few of my students making their first trip to fire in America, and the old hands of the Oki-doki. It was a fantastic bunch. During the cooling we had field trips to Stormking; the famous sculpture garden near Newburg NY, and visits to Jeff Shapiro, Peters Valley and Peter Callas. Thank you Sue and Ron!
Kiln Building/Firing workshop. December, 2016
This December master kiln builder John Bradford, from Taos, NM, came over to lead a kiln building/firing workshop. With seven participants, five local and two from the US, we built a small anagama that tied into the back of the chimney on our larger anagama. Over two three-day weekends we managed to build it. We loaded on December 27 and 28th. Lit it that evening and fired it off with cone 12 over at midnight New Years Eve. Shiro christened it 'Little Snapper' based on the shape, a name at which most Japanese cringe. It was a great way to ring in the New Year. Pictures below.
Hank Murrow residency and Fall Firing
This fall we were very fortunate to have Hank Murrow here for a 6-week residency. Hank, an Oregon Potter for over 50 years, has been on the forefront of Shino glazes in North America. He was a joy to have around. He gave demonstrations at our studio here and also at The Canadian Academy for the students and teachers there. Hank is an incredibly generous soul and we were very fortunate to have him here.
I was also blessed with an wonderful assistant for 3 months this fall: Tyler Billman. A student at the University of Chicago, he had taken a semester off to work with us here. For a 21-year old he was wise and capable beyond his age. He was never late, and never complained about any dismal job I asked him to do. He is sorely missed.
While they were here we fired the big kiln and it was one of the best firings we have had. Another young man, Sean Couley was here for the firing. I feel extremely fortunate to be able to be a conduit for the people who love Japan and ceramics.