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vince pitelka's summer workshop in n w washington state

updated tue 14 nov 06


Michael McDowell on mon 13 nov 06

It may be a little early for many of you to be planning next summer's =
activities, but I'm starting to get inquiries. Vince and I have just =
finalized our plan for his offering here next summer, and I figured that =
Clayart was the first and best place to start getting the word out.

The topic for this year's five day, hands on workshop is "Handbuilding: =
Tricks of the Trade"

Here are some of Vince's remarks on handbuilding in general:

"While the potter's wheel originated in the Middle East approximately =
5000 years ago, many cultures through history have always preferred =
handbuilding techniques. Today, handbuilding encompasses a broad range =
of utilitarian and sculptural form in contemporary clay. In our =
technological society we are so easily seduced by tools and machinery, =
assuming that the product of our endeavors will be improved by our use =
of these devices. In ceramics, that is sometimes a mistake. The wheel is =
appropriate only for certain kinds of forms, while handbuilding offers =
unlimited possibilities. The wheel tends to impose symmetry, unless the =
potter purposefully introduces asymmetry. Handbuilt form tends toward =
asymmetry, unless the potter asserts the choice and has the skill to =
make the work symmetrical. And no matter how symmetrical a handbuilt =
form might appear, it is never as mechanically symmetrical as most =
wheel-thrown forms, and therefore tends to communicates an organic, =
human quality, representing the hands, the movements, and the =
personality of the maker."

Here are his objectives for this workshop:

"Our objective is to get you to handbuild with a sense of adventure and =
discovery. We will explore unusual ways of approaching pinch, coil, and =
slab construction in order to develop a particular mind set, an =
adventurous inclination to use handbuilt forms in new ways, opening up =
the possibility of original form inaccessible through more traditional =
approaches. Although our primary concerns are design and construction, =
we will bisque-fire as much work as possible so that it can be =
transported safely. We will have a number of slide shows to introduce a =
broad range of handbuilt form and technique."

Dates are from July 23rd thru July 27th
Cost is $300 + clay
Location: McDowell Pottery, Ferndale, WA 98248

For the rest of the details go to my website: =>=20

I'd appreciate any suggestions about where else to post notice. please =
email such directly to =

Michael McDowell
Whatcom County, WA, USA