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paperclay tiles

updated fri 3 may 02


Mike on wed 1 may 02

hi potters---i would like info of any ones experience using paper clay
for tiles---does it warp as it dries or develop any other problems after
forming and firing? has any one used axners paper clay ? would it
be a good alternative to the waist drop technique? i like the
concept, but my desire is to make some big tiles over 24". now as i
write this i remember reading of some australian chap, featured in an
old issue of ceramics techniques mag., using paper clay. makes me
think i should email him. less shrinking=less warping so

for anyone's info---here is the clay recipe robert rausenberg used for
his large tiles made in japan
wollasstonite-50 ball clay-40 talc-10 fired to cone 3
no shrink [up to 30 square feet]

and jerry rothman wrote of his zero shrink clay in c m magazine dec. 92
page 37

industry uses minimal water and flash fire for no warping----using less
clay and more grog or sand etc. helps too.

thanks-----mike norman-----p.s. send me any and all of your glaze and
clay recipe disasters----i'm compiling info for a manual---- wild
disasters to incredible creations

Paul Lewing on thu 2 may 02

Mike, a couple of years ago, I did a workshop at Appalachian Center for
Crafts, and Rosette Gault was doing a paperclay workshop in the adjoining
ceramics studio. Before shhe got there, Vince Pitelka had made a whole
stack of plaster slabs for that workshop, 2 feet by 2 feet. The people in
the workshop were pouring paperclay slip out onto these slabs and making
tiles that size. They were amazing- didn't warp or crack, even when the
people folded them double and laid them back down when they were wet. They
still came out flat. I was amazed. One guy in my tile workshop had brought
a plaster press mold for a tile, and the tiles he was getting out of it in
my workshop were warping. He made some in the same mold from paperclay, and
they didn't.
Go for it.
Paul Lewing, Seattle

Stephani Stephenson on thu 2 may 02

I have had amazing success with paperclay tiles. pour paperclay slip
into relief molds, or press mold with paperclay.
absolutely no warping and very high degree of green strength.
Just for fun made some 10 X 20 inch relief tiles by pouring paperclay
slip into relief mold. made some of the tiles 1/8" thick, others 1/4"
green glazed them. absolutely flat backs, no warping and fired strength
quite good too.
lightweight for framing. still amazes me.
only thing slowing down process is that the paperclay slip especially
takes a LONG time to dry, and takes awhile before you caqn turn it out
of the mold.

I made some slabs with paperclay and put them in the sun to quick warping either...

Stephani Stephenson
Carlsbad CA