Joy Tanner soda fired pottery

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Process

My work is wheel thrown and altered using porcelain and stoneware clays.  I enjoy incorporating elements of texture into my work that I carve, impress or stamp into the clay at specific stages of the making. After each form is complete, when the clay is leatherhard, the pieces are each dipped into flashing slips. These thin clay slips will flash warm earth tones from the wood and soda firing.  Once the pots are bone dry, they are bisque fired, glazed, wadded, and loaded into the soda kiln.

The hand carved patterns and textures in my work are direct reflections of the nature surrounding me.  I strive to bring this awareness of the beauty of nature full circle, directly into the hands of the user of my functional pots.  Perhaps by seeing these reflections, those people too, will realize the importance of our environment and make sustainable choices within their lives.

During the end of the firing, a soda ash mixture is stoked into the kiln.  The soda ash vaporizes and travels throughout the kiln, landing on the pots stacked within the shelves. The soda acts as a glaze on the pots, creating variation and directional tones within the clay surfaces.  After the firing, the kiln cools for two days before the unloading begins!



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