Swanica explores Japan

Thursday, September 28, 2006

My show at Furuki-san's Pottery Center in Mashiko.

In the entrance.

In the window.

Some wonderful results at Furuki-san's Pottery Center.

Procedure of Horse Hair "Uma no Ke" firing.

You put the plate on a tissue, which starts to burn, because you take it hot out of the kiln at 800-650 Celcius degrees or 1600-1350 Fahrenheit degrees.

Then you can sprinkle it with some sugar.

You quickly add the horsehair before it cools off too much.

I spray with ferric chloride to get the brownish/orange/yellow color.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The big Anagama at Furuki-san`s Center is being fired by a Sunday Pottery Club from Tokyo, "Nokano-Nitiyou Kai".
It took 2 days to fill the kiln with about 1000 pieces: some big ones, but a lot of small ones.

The kiln fires on wood and it takes 5 days to fire and 7 days to cool down. The temperature it reaches is 1250 degrees Celsius.

Stoking the kiln.

Looking through a peep hole. It is already 1200 degrees.
Pictures from me and my work at Furuki-san`s Mashiko Pottery Club International.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

I find myself back in Mahiko after been in The Netherlands for 3 weeks, also visiting Barcelona for 5 days.
This is a wonderful city with of course "The Sagrada Familia" Cathedral from Gaudi, which is still in full progress. Everything is so impressive, especially the inside built like big trees, incredible! Also, "Casa Mila" from Gaudi is very pretty to visit and "The Palau the Musica" from the architect Montaner, who also did our hotel "Espagna". Then, of course, we didn`t forget Picasso and Dali in the city Figueres.
I had a wonderful time with my family in Holland and celebrated my godfather`s 50st wedding anniversary. He is now 88 years old and was already 38 when he married. Can you imagine if we make it that far!
Adriaan went to America for work and visits 2 of our sons.

I`m in Mashiko to try to do the "horsehair" firing technique. In Holland I found the pressurized spray bottles (they don`t have them in Japan), but don`t ask me how much it cost to send it to Japan, because it is "dangerous" material. My brother helped me find horse hair. So, now I only have to find some heavy duty gloves and tongs to take the pieces out of the hot electric kiln.
They don`t have here Raku like gas kilns.
Furuki-san`s centre is a nice clay place. There are quite some people potting around. There is even a big group fromTokyo who uses the big Anagama with 5 chambers. This will fire for 5 days and the temperature will go to 1250 C. All on wood!
We all have together tea and I sleep here in a small apartment with a small kitchen.
So, for the moment everything goes very well.
I threw and trimmed 15 pieces which are drying now and hopefully, I can bisque tomorrow.
Next time, you'll see some pictures.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Finally, I succeed in downloading the pattern pictures made by the waves when they receed on the Zaimikoza beach in Kamakura. The sand is white and black colored and gives the most incredible glaze like patterns.