I have taken it into my head to start making coiled pots; it’s about six years since I spent a week coiling one very large storage jar at the tinajaria in Spain, and it was not something that particularly excited me in relation to my own practice. but recently I was intrigued to watch a short video of Gordon Baldwin working in his studio, coiling and the wonderful shapes he made. also I had seen a clip of a Korean potter making moon jars, and loved the bellied shapes.
so the first coiled effort was similar to a moon jar. I started upside down at the widest point, closed the form in gently and waited until it was stiff enough to turn right way up without collapsing,
then continued up the rest of the form. this method really works for me.
I can use a round batt to make sure the form is symmetrical – or not.
the damp cold winter weather means that I can leave a pot to stiffen overnight without covering it up.
and coils can wait for use, though actually I don’t make many, sometimes just one at a time. I have found that it works better for me if I flatten them before attaching. this method is miles away from the technique my friends at Moreno Léon use.
I am using a toothed kidney tool to scrape and flatten, in most cases leaving the scraped texture
as a form of decoration.
I love the big swelling shapes of the two I finished today
I used all but a bag of white St Thomas for the two – the one above is thirteen inches high
this one is seventeen inches high, with swelling belly on one side, the other side almost flat.
this smaller one about twelve inches.
I have made some in the pink grogged stoneware too
but the st Thomas is loveliest to work with.
it is a contemplative method, and you have to be patient with the coils, and careful to stop working before the form sags, to give it time to stiffen up.
I have been making them as light and fine as I dare, so they have got more refined since the first one. A new group of pieces, something very different for me.
what glazes to use? I don’t think the chun is suitable, I would prefer a drier glaze that is more closely sunk into the surface. so maybe some engobe glazes, like slips, and some oxide washes sponged off to stay only in the depressions.