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Week 35

  1. Angelica Pozo writes of three tenants that all tile makers should be able to agree on. These include using a clay body with 15 to 20% grog to prevent warping or cracking, _______________________________, and do not hurry the drying.

    1. White clays are best to use for tiles

    2. Earthenware tiles are most durable

    3. clay has memory and therefore should be kept flat at all times

    4. Wall tiles have the same glaze consideration as floor tiles.

  2. Mary Barringer, a potter who started with reduction firing, and switched over to electric firing calls the electric kiln the ultimate firing tool, ready to be used and do ones bidding (within limits), but with __________________________.

    1. the set back of oxidation firing

    2. very little character of its own

    3. Pricey electric bills

    4. too small a firing chamber

  3. Michael Sherrill, who works with extrusions, makes his own dies using________________or nylon sheets 1/2” thick.

    1. Aluminum

    2. plywood

    3. fiberglass

    4. polyethylene

  4. Michael also ___________ many of his forms while still in the extruder. Thus allowing for organic tapered forms.

    1. pulls

    2. cuts

    3. paddles

    4. measures

 

 

This weeks questions come from The Penland Book of Ceramics, Master Classes in Ceramic Techniques, c 2003 Lark books, Lark books a division of Sterling Publishing, NY NY

 

Note from Pres: This book is one of those involving a lot of techniques by renowned artists in clay. For those looking for inspiration, possible solutions to specific problems or just good reading, it is a gem.

 

Answers:

  1. 3. clay has memory and therefore should be kept flat at all times-Similarly I have found that tips and techniques for tile making can he quite varied, idiosyncratic, and at times seemingly contradictory. However, there are three basic tenets that just about every tile maker should agree with. Number one has to do with the clay itself. Making tiles that do not warp or crack is a much easier task if one uses a clay with a good amount of sand and/ or grog. Ideally that would he around 15 to 3O percent grog. I use 10 per- cent fine and 20 percent medium grog in my terra-cotta tile body. The open pore structure that the grog provides enables the tiles to dry more evenly and, therefore, helps prevent warpage. The second basic tenet has to do with memory. “Yes, Virginia, clay does have a memory.” If you can keep the slabs and later the tiles flat and supported throughout the entire tile making and handling process, you have a much better chance of ending up with tiles that are flat. The third tenet is: do not hurry the drying process.

  2. 2. very little character of its own-Switching to electric firing changed this, and brought me face to face with my ideas (or lack of them) about the surfaces of my work. The electric kiln provides almost no input to the fired results, except for the reassuring ones touted by school-supply catalogs: safe, reliable, easy to use, etc. lt's the ultimate firing tool, ready to be used and do one’s bidding (within limits), but with very little character of its own.

  3. 4.polyethylene-For my dies, I use polyethylene or nylon sheets that are 1/2 inch (1.3 cm) thick (this is the same material used for some kitchen cutting boards). I have dies that make hollow tubes from 11/2 to 4 inches (3.8 X 10.2 cm) in diameter. l take great care to make sure the dies and bridges are crafted with some precision, so that the thickness of the extrusion can be adjusted by changing the inside of the die. (The bridge is the part that connects the inside and outside of the die. creating the tube extrusion.) Over the fears I've changed the bridge design to better mix the clay as it travels around the bridge and through the die, which results in a stronger extrusion.

  4. 1. pulls-from demonstration text.

 

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