I arrived to lots of excited chatter, anticipating the fun and learning about to happen.
Marienne placed us under the umbrella of ‘only pottery associated things to be discussed for our time here’. She then centred us all with some light exercises and relaxation. This focused everyone on the task ahead.
Once down to business, Marienne demonstrated how to make a slip, with many helpful hints thrown in, proving to be the trend for the day. Marienne has a wealth of knowledge which she shared with us, little tidbits of information popping out all the time; such as the ideal base to width dimensions of a bowl and why slip as opposed to underglaze. If you want to know the answers to these questions you will have to wait for next year, when we’re hoping to convince Marienne to hold another workshop.
Over the morning Marienne demonstrated 12 techniques of how to apply slip. Some of them included using the wheel, some painting, some dipping, slip trailing, such a variety. Some were simple, others taking practice to achieve, all were visually interesting. I think this workshop gave all attendees something to carry on with.
Morning tea was plentiful and scrumptious (as I believe has become our tradition at the Workshop), along
with much chatter and laughter. Not just lots of food, but lots of food for thought.
Towards the end of the workshop, someone said, ‘we will have to do this again’ and everyone agreed. It was not only an informative workshop, but fun. Thank you Marienne for sharing your knowledge, skills and passion with us.
Lesley Weber CCPS President
Recently, I had the pleasure of visiting John Tuckwell's studio in Bellingen, northern NSW. This was my first trip there. The heritage country town of Bellingen impressed me for its arts and craft and a somewhat new- age feel, not to mention great eateries, coffee and live music. Nearby there is also the majestic Dorrigo National Heritage Forest.
Luckily, the river had subsided from the previous week's floods so that we, my husband, Mike, and myself could drive across the bridge to John's home. He was so kind and welcoming. We were privileged to see his latest laminated work; coloured paperclay slip on a white background, fine inlay work with gestural black lines. Those of us who did his workshop at CCPS last June will appreciate the perfection of John's work. He has three kilns: a small Tetlow electric; a large 3-phase electric Woodrow kiln which he really likes for his type of work; and a large Steve Harrison gas kiln. His wife, Gloria, is currently working with neriage techniques. Although he has solar panels on his roof for domestic use, he would be hard pressed to fire up his 3-phase kiln relying solely on the sun!
John plans to do a residency in Hungary this year. He says Hungary has the whitest porcelain clay. I look forward to seeing how this experience will inspire his future work. In the meantime, John is having an exhibition at the Mansfield Gallery.
DATES - 12 May to 12 June 2017
LOCATION - Mansfield Gallery
269D Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
+61 2 9332 4379
CCPS Vice President
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Central Coast Potters Society is a non-profit, community organisation of like-minded volunteers who love clay.