Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Pit firing in Shijiezi village, Gansu Province, China

Pots and some clay was brought by train from Lanzhou

We were driven to the village by taxi

A poster with the day's program hung in the village

Jin Le's father 

Jin Le, Professor of Sculpture and mayor of the village, with his father

Clay had been prepared
Holes were dug and edged with bricks
Pots ready to be placed in the pit

Pots had been bisque fired beforehand

Fong lighting his pit fire
Pots laid between grass and wood
Keaton Wynn gathering firewood
Fire lit

The fire catches
Lunch was served, some had bowls made last year from local clay
Pinchpot workshop
Jin Le's father making a pinch pot
The fire covered and left to burn down overnight
Recent wall carving in the village

Back to Lanzhou by high-speed train

Friday, 21 September 2018

Monday, 17 September 2018

Thursday, 31 May 2018


Pinchpots in China
A residency at Lanzhou City University, Gansu Province, China

23rd May - 19th July 2018

I was one of three artists invited as artists-in-residence and visiting professors at Lanzhou City University, Gansu Province, China.
The other two participants were Patsy Cox, Professor at California State University, Northridge, Los Angeles, USA and Keith Ekstam, Professor at Missouri State, Springfield, Missouri, USA. The whole concept of the residency, and the organisation of the project together with his Chinese counterparts, is in the hands of Keaton Wynn - Georgia Southwestern State University who also participated as Artist-in-Residence and guide to all the complexities of living and working in Lanzhou.

On the 22rd May I flew from Copenhagen to Stockholm, where I switched planes to the Air China flight to Beijing, and from there caught a connecting flight to Lanzhou.
Arriving at Lanzhou airport I was met by two students from the ceramic department and a driver. The airport is about 70 kms from the city, and the fine toll road passes through a landscape dominated by strangely eroded mountains. 

We stayed for the duration of the residency in the small hotel “Shijia Inn” 5 minutes walk down a shady street from the Ceramic Studio of Lanzhou City University.



We had most of our meals at a restaurant close to the hotel.
Dinner - from an enormous menu with many imponderable translations, but fortunately photos of everything on the menu.

 Market stalls on the street outside the hotel

On our first Sunday, after the morning studio time, we (Keith, Patsy and I) set off to walk down to the Yellow River - with the help of vague verbal instructions and digital maps. Here is a little photo sequence of the walk.



It took me some time to get used to the clay and to find out just what it could and could not 
do:  it was very short” for coiling, but pinching worked quite well.
As it could only fire to cone 6 I decided to treat it as an earthenware clay and fire to under 1000C and use terra siggilata slips made from all the local clays I could find.  Perhaps I would be able to pit-fire some of the work.......

Wonderful ancient pots of the region were the source of much inspiration.

QiZi (studio technician) pinching

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Picasso at Louisiana

Picasso's Ceramics is on at the Louisiana Museum of Art in Humlebæk, Denmark until the 27th May. https://en.louisiana.dk/exhibition/picasso-ceramics

Stunning bull fighting platters with drama and perspective, sunlight and shadow!

Leaving the museum at 21.30 - it's not long til midsummer