Critique: Stacking Bowls

20120804-222924.jpgThis photo of bowls I tracked back through various re-postings to but nowhere along the way was an artist stated. It is so important to give credit where credit is due, always. So if you know this maker let me know! For as you will see I have a great deal of reverence for these stackers. It seems everyone is compiling and curateing lists and boards and collections online these days. I soon will be hoping on board and using such online organizers such as pintrest, that currently use too much data for my monthly internet allotment. Before such venues existed I made specific notes of pots and sites by hand. It is getting easier and easier to make nice sets. Nazara, the founder of the site I traced this photo back to (Oye Nazara- site your posts!) Says,” I enjoy making ephemeral collections”. I prefer real ones but lack the space, time or money to spread my prying tendrils very far into physical ownership. I have a collection of jugs well under way… One a year! Just as methodically random Nazara has become subject of this blog by coincidence so is the was we collect blog feeds and photos and words on the net- almost arbitrary. Click, click, click. Load. I feel the same way about esthetic choices. With such boundless potential a direction can be taken anywhere, with endless stimulation inspiration can be fond anywhere. It is best to let the destination not runneth trip. An artist so hell-bent on producing a preconceived thing will suffer- for designers do not make but us potters, designers everyone make in the capacity of artists. I am at times greater part designer and as maker then one who pummels and pushes clay into the theory my mind has molded- mainly with exhibition work and with my studio work I meander and explore an develop. It is most important that we develop. When looking at work- say these blows and plates- I always wonder as to the makers path. The decisions and story and process of a work intrigue me as much as more than the result. But all we have is the result before us.

This ensemble evokes thoughts of sand dunes and sea grass challenged by strong winds and grey skies. I can almost hear the sound of the crashing surf and see the sandstone cliffs rising in the distance at the other end of the inlet. I can almost feerhyme sunscreen in my sure and the cold whip at my cheeks. Or not.

Color is something many people can’t get past. (Do you have it in blue…?) I am from time to time a person who hones in on color- it can be a memory trigger as strong as smell. These pots make me smell the sea with out and blatant over done seaside references (thank goodness!). They could easily also be the desert night on the verge of dawn. Cereal bowl?

These “stackers” as I’ve deemed them, stack splendidly. Nestle. I do not fear for chipped rim nor foot. Let’s put them in the cupboard! But how would my fork sound on that surface? Would that matt exterior suffer the silver marks of fork or spoon, as matt surfaces so often do?

Is that slight speckle to akin to spackle? Just think of all those beige office buildings and cheap appartments.

I also fear for that inner curve of the more shallow bowl. The continuity of the inner curve of a bowl is key to a harmonious form. Beginners beware- pay the utmost heed to the inside of your bowl as it is what informs and ultimately shapes the silhouette. Firstly perfect the inside then the outside always checking the inside where the exterior side clay supports walls/base for this is the spot what will hinder your inside continuity. This bowl’s interior may be choppy but not distinct enough. This is what I find over and over. If two edges are opposed or an ungracious line is at work, make it distinct. Unsure changes in motion do nothing for the eye, hand or lip. This is also a key thing to understand- all appearances are due to a change in speed or motion or pressure (pinched as these pots might be, slump molded
as these pots might be).

The smaller bowls due their depth and steep rising sides do not suggest discontinuity inside.

In keeps and perhaps prompting my ocean shore musings is this image by Michelle Morin…. I got in the email today. Hello color scheme.


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