Jeremy/Bonnie Hellman on mon 20 jun 05
A bit over a week ago, I was fortunate enough to attend an extruder workshop
presented by Diana Pancioli at Linda Blossom's studio in Ithaca, NY. This
was a gold mine of useful information relating to using extruded pieces and
in finishing hand made work, just like her book Extruded Ceramics:
Techniques * Projects * Inspirations (A Lark Ceramics Book)
Linda is a gracious, sharing host and as usual the small group of
participants was particularly friendly. Linda is presenting Gary Holt later
this summer, and I highly recommend the setting as particularly enjoyable,
even though we endured an unseasonable hot spell for the extruder workshop.
Diana got everyone making pieces from parts extruded by those of us
who arrived Friday afternoon. She showed methods of handbuilding, using a
variety of extruded pieces, textures, and different approaches. I know that
everyone, including me, got a lot of information plus we got to get our
hands in clay.
Diana has so much to offer, and I enjoyed spending time with her and
the other clay people. We spent time discussing extruder dies that we can
make. Some people actually cut a few, and we got to try using a wide variety
of the clay extruded in those dies.
If you think that ceramic pieces made with extruded pieces have to
look mechanical, then think again. Diana showed us so many variations that
could be combined with thrown work and can be used to create molds for
slumped or humped work. We also made one such mold, and used a mold that
Diana had brought with her. She was beautifully organized, and when the clay
didn't cooperate, we got to see how it is possible to improvise.
For me, this was a workshop in making and finishing hand built pots,
and I got way more than I ever could have expected. Thank you, Diana! Plus,
with the great group of people, this was a most excellent weekend and
everyone went away with a lot of memorable experiences!