Monday, May 3, 2010

Rapunzel Rapunzel Let Down Your Hair

Some time ago while surfing the web I came across a potter from the U.K. (I think) who had some wonderful handbuilt vases with figures on them, including one of Rapunzel with black hair cascading down the side of the vase. It was done in underglaze pencils and slips I think. I thought the hair as a focal point had a lot of potential for my work

Later I drew a sketch of it (or at least what I remembered of it as I have since lost the website) and added some of my own touches like the fish. For months it percolated at the back of my mind and finally I built one of my appliques pieces based on the piece. It turned out nothing like what I had expected - nothing like the loose lively vase of the UK potter. Ended up very tight, more  medieval looking and because of the fish  -  I called it Rapunzel Goes Fishing.

I had to refire it as cracks developed on the back of the side wing where I had pieced together several slabs to thicken the the wing. I knew that I should have taken the time to roll out another whole slab rather than piece things together but I got lazy. I appled some extra thick temmoku above the cracks, hoping it would run down and cover them, which it did. However because of the second firing the glaze on the hair turned somewhat darker and not as nice as the first time round. Unfortunately I also got several cracks on the inside of the thickened rim which opened more the second time round. I thought that I had that problem solved by using paper clay and using it quite wet so there was no join and then slowly drying it all.

I have since tried finding the website of that potter that inspired me but without luck - so if anyone recognizes that potter I would love to see her pot again.

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