Saturday, March 16, 2013

Cinderella Vase, Just Can't Smash It

For some reason I just can't smash this vase. Originally I called it a Cinderella vase. Today I called it a castle vase. Maybe I gave it name because it symbolizes what I like to make with clay, different pieces, pieces that are challenge for me to make. From the first time I started working in clay I experimented with different shapes, different textures, different styles. What a lot of fun clay is.

I made this vase in 2008. It's 11 1/4 inches tall and 5 inches wide. It's slab built of Windsor porcelain and textured with a bow tie noodle. The top and bottom were made separately and the eight columns are solid rectangles of clay. After I made all the sections I attached them all together with slip. I built it at home and carried it to the college to be fired. Amazingly it made the transport without event.

But at the college someone else loaded it into the bisque firing and the bottom portion broke free. I was so disappointed. I decided to glaze fire it anyway hoping to use an epoxy to hold it together after firing.

I glazed it with a tenmoku and a Tom Coleman celadon blue and high fired it to Cone 10 in the school's gas kiln.

I've never glued it together. It's spent it's life on the shelf in two separate pieces since then. While I was taking these photos I noticed all the roughness of the piece. The slab sides are uneven thickness, the edges are rough, the glazes are applied unevenly, the bottom is rough, and it's heavy. Still I just can't smash it; I really do like the form. Should I make another one just like it. I can't seem to motivate myself to do that either.

I don't have many pieces left of my high fired work. I miss working with high fire reduction glazes. What about you, do you have a piece of pottery you made which you just can't smash? This post is part of Mud Colony what's happening in the studio. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.


  1. Methinks you are a little nostalgic!

  2. A history of surviving may be holding it together to this day.

  3. Haven't been doing this for long enough for the nostalgia to begin. Although I definitely have some pieces that I love but would make much better these days.
    I can see why you like that pice though.

  4. I think it has multitudinous failings, just as I do. I'd keep it on that alone ;o.

  5. Smash it? No, no, no. Some rainy afternoon you could glue it instead. It would look good with a sturdy bunch of crysanthenums or daisies in it. And indeed, looks pretty good without them. And I love the use of the bow tie pasta to get the texture.

  6. well not myself but my mother in-law has kept my first bowls (oh embarrassment) - love that bow tie pasta texture!

  7. If you can't bring yourself to smash it there must be a reason. It's a neat pot: I'd keep it. But then, I like to keep and mull stuff over!

  8. Some pieces just have to stay with us.

  9. Hi Ms. Sparrow, thanks, I think you are correct.

    Hi Joanne, thanks, sometimes these clay pieces are so strong and other times so fragile.

    Hi Cazz, thanks, it's funny how nostalgia comes with time, nice to be there then and now.

    Hi Mary, thanks, perhaps that's why I keep it, it's the failings that so much more interesting, like my own too. Ha.

    Hi Elephant's Child, thanks, I do like the strong shape of it sort of a tribute unto itself. Perhaps one of these days I will glue it.

    Hi Anna, thanks, and to think I haven't done a bow tie texture since then, it does make a nice effect, I must keep that in mind.

    Hi Suzi, thanks, I guess I do the same thing, the mulling over of things.

    Hi Lori, thanks, yes some things just stay with us don't they.


I love suggestions, questions, critiques, thanks for your comment