Friday, July 29, 2005

The increasingly-common pre-shabbat update

This time [maybe] with a picture in the corner,probably of me centering a piece of clay-taken by a young guy called Yudi,a friend of Yasha's,I believe.The Gladiators are playing on my radio station [links],it's Summer-hot,and I've just turned off the kiln at 920 degrees,the end of a bisc firing.I probably should have prepared some glazes this afternoon,but the heat [and some tourists and concommitent sales] proved too much- I trimmed and shaved some pots in this new [for me] Spanish red stoneware,slopped some water around the studio floor to lay the dust,and did some clay management [spreading/turning/wedging recycled clay].After a few failed attempts,I have managed to recycle some of the T.C. porcelain,which demands spot-on timing to catch it at the correct consistency.Currently in use in the studio:my standard French stoneware,the Spanish Red,a ground-brick-grogged mixture of these two,a new white stoneware I was asked to test in the salt kiln,a mix of various whitish stonewares (with a bit of the French for character)which is my current salt clay,my old Naaman Porcelain,the Tom Coleman Porcelain,and [inevitably] a mixture of the two.This is far too many for a small studio,and I am waiting eagerly for some of them to disappear.Meanwhile,the plan is to prepare for a glaze firing next week -a couple of orders,some tests,and some salt-holders to put between pots in the salt-kiln,and which,from experience,need to be high-fired before use-otherwise [if only bisced] the handful of salt they contain fluxes the clay and leaves you with a dark brown puddle stuck to the shelf,the kind of blunder one tries not to make more than once.The next salt-firing is in the air- Sydney and I want to do some work on the kiln,the heat in Yesod is fierce,and we are both busy with guests and other Summery activities,but it'll probably happen in the next week or so.Current reading- Milan Kundera's long essay called "Testaments Betrayed",the most stimulating piece of writing I've read in many a long year.Grape Update:not an outstandingly huge number of grapes on the vine this year,but still a good and healthy-looking crop,most bunches well on their way to ripeness,but still with quite a few green guys still to change colour.With our long Spring and gentle early Summer,I'm expecting them to ripen a bit later than usual,some time after the Eilat Jazz Festival,with its enticing list of guest performers,which,as usual,is the last week in August.This might mean that the wine won't be ready for drinking,as tradition demands,by Succot,but one must be flexible in these matters,no?Shabbat shalom...


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home