Cake Plate at Table Manners-Lark and Key Gallery Charlotte NC

Lark and Key Gallery is hosting the invitational exhibit Table Manners until November 27th. This show centers around table ware and food presentation. Julie Wiggins and Amy Sanders curated the show and asked each artist to produce a plate, bowl and cup. They were very kind to allow me to send service ware. I was in between studios at the time of the invitation so I sent a cake plate and condiment tray. They wrote a beautiful statement that I copied below. When I first read that second paragraph I was nodding my head saying "right on". Its a good reminder that potters are bound by their appreciation for our community and the good meals that build that community. Click here to see images from the show. I particularly like Molly Hatch's set.

Functional Pottery For Your Table, A feast For Your Eyes.
Group pottery exhibit featuring functional pottery for the table. Curated by Lark & Key potters Julie Wiggins and Amy Sanders.  The exhibit aims to showcase a diverse collection of ceramic tableware and bring awareness to the hand-made in conjunction to the homemade.

Mealtime often revolves around rituals and routines; the use of hand-made plates, bowls and other tableware can enhance these events.  The care and love with which they have been made contributes to the joy of eating and provides a sense of connection and community with the artists that created them. The combination of homemade and handmade allows us to focus on the moment - the aromas, tastes and textures of the food along with the visual and tactile experience of the vessels in which it is being served.

Other potters include Jason Bohnert, Robert Briscoe, Ben Carter, Naomi Cleary,  Chandra Debuse, Susan Dewsnap, Amy Halko, Molly Hatch, Shawn Ireland, Nick Joerling, Linda Johnson, Suze Lindsay, Allison McGowan, Kent McLaughlin, Kelly O'Briant, Kristin Pavelka, Joe Pintz, Emily Reason, Elizabeth Robinson, Joe Singewald, Gay Smith and Lana Wilson.

The cake plate that I sent is similar to the one pictured above. I started to make that form in reference to my father's Apple Sauce Cake. This simple Christmas cake replaces the oil/butter with apple sauce. It adds a little extra sweetness to the raisins/cinnamon/flour combination and makes the cake really moist. He also makes our secret family recipe oatmeal cookies around Christmas. I'll be overseas this year so I hope to get both of these treats in a care package around December 23rd. (hint, hint...Dad I know you can get them through Chinese customs)


A little goes a long way- 2010 Orton Cone Box show

One of my vine tumblers was accepted into this years Orton Cone Box show. I had totally forgotten about it until one of my Twitter friends emailed me to say she bought the cup. I love how small our clay world is. Here is more info from the Lawrence Arts Center's spot on the show. It will also be on display at NCECA this year.

Lawrence Arts Center also has a clay symposium happening October 22-23rd. It features Linda Christensen, Matt Long, Julia Galloway, Mark Burns, David Hiltner, and Tom Bartel. That sounds like a fantastic group to hang out with for the weekend. For more info click here

The International ConeBox Show reaches every part of the world. The 287 pieces submitted for the 2010 show came from 11 countries, including 40 USA states and 3 Canadian provinces.
The 147 pieces selected for the show were chosen for creativity, humor, imagination, craftsmanship and aesthetic excellence in combination with the artist’s knowledge of the clay medium. It is often heard that making ceramic art to fit the 3x3x6 inch dimension of the Orton Cone Box and still have work with a presence is a challenge.
Since 1994, Inge G. Balch, Professor of Art at Baker University in Baldwin City Kansas, has been the curator of the show and the show became international. The ConeBox Show is generously supported by The Edward Orton Jr. Ceramic Foundation.
The high quality of the show is maintained by inviting national and international jurors, who are recognized in the field of ceramics, to jury the show. Jurors for the 2010 ConeBox Show were Peter Callas, Malcolm Davis and Inge G. Balch. Past jurors have represented USA, Australia, England, Japan, Cuba and Denmark.
During the nine bi-annual shows from 1994-2010, artists from 36 countries, all fifty USA states, Puerto Rico, Washington DC, eight Canadian provinces and US army personnel stationed in Germany have been part of the exhibition. The artists have made 3680 entries resulting in 6050 pieces of art work.
The ConeBox Show was started by Bill Bracker in 1975, while teaching at Perdue University, as a way to encourage and promote creativity and excellence in the ceramics art. The standard Orton Cone Box, 3x3x6 inches, was chosen as the size limitation for the pieces in the show. The show continued in 1977 and 1979 but lay dormant from 1979 to 1994.
Inge G. Balch


Ivo Sassi at the Pottery Workshop

We recently hosted Italian sculptor Ivo Sassi for a week as he finished one of his monumental sculptures.  He was in Shanghai to present his sculpture as a gift to the local Chinese government. In collaboration with Gao Yifeng, Sassi built a totem that was 4 meters high. His 50 years in clay have yielded a very direct and immediate approach to manipulating form and surface. He reminded me of an Italian Peter Volkous as he was attacking the clay with a fettling knife and runny slip.

Sassi spoke no English so we had lots of funny lost in translation moments. At one point a Chinese TV crew came to the studio. With the help of his son we explained that if he was going to be on TV he had to put his shirt back on. (He was a fan of working with just his shorts and apron.) It made for a good laugh between all the English speakers who were witnessing this request being translated from Chinese to English to Italian and back again.