Developing - woodfired ceramics
Wood- fired pottery is pottery fired in wood kiln outdoors using wood (as fuel), flame and ash to glaze pots at very high temperature (around 1300 degrees). Flame and ash are used to achieve effects, usually very little glaze is used on the pots. Wood ash melts and travels with the flame, touching pots. Fired pieces show ash deposits and the path of the flame through the kiln. Process requires team work of at least 3 people and it takes few days. When firing wood-fired kiln, the atmosphere inside the kiln is very important. You have to control that the temperature rises properly and the amount of oxygen to achieve low oxygen atmosphere (reduction) which leads to special effects. With firing complete, the kiln is “clammed” or sealed and left to cool. When the doors of the kiln are opened is a time for reflection of the whole process. With each wood firing love and excitement about it grows. This is why Mateja (INHAND) is planning to build her own kiln in near future.
What means stoneware, earthware
Earthenware ceramics in ceramics fired a low tempeteture, usualy arround 1100 °C, however stoneware clay is fired at minimum 1200 °C. Higher temperatuire results in denser and less porous ceramics, which is more durable and can resist scratches. These products also feature color patterns that look like natural stones in the end.
What means fire with reduction
To understand what is happening in the wood firing kiln, is important to understand process of reduction. While firing the wood kiln, it is important to achieve low oxygen atmosphere, so oxygen is prevented from interacting with the glazes during glaze maturation. The flame searches for more oxygen and will pull said oxygen out of clay bodies and glazes. Gases in the kiln like carbon, hydrogen and CO wants to combine with oxygen, so they steal it from within bodies and glazes.
Reduction firing produces different colors and visual effects because metallic oxides convert to reduced or more metallic form.
Why use handmade products
“There is beauty in imperfection and having items that are really handmade.”
»It is a desire to get back to something more essential.«
“People are looking to have their humanity reflected back at them,” “People are moving back from slick and stainless steel to something warmer.”
»There’s something to be said for holding a handmade ceramics piece in your hand. There’s so much heft and character to it. The tactile effect is cool and soothing, whether the finish is smooth or cratered and bumpy. It feels like holding a piece of history, even though the piece may be recently made. »
»In the home, ceramics can be both functional (like dinnerware) and just for show (sculptural pieces). Even the functional pieces, like plates, serving bowls, pitchers and crocks can make a wonderful visual addition and add character to your home decor though.«
- ceramic mugs retain heat better
- it just tastes better
- handmade is good for the environment
- each handmade product is unique
- handmade withstands the time
- handmade is quirky and is on trend
- there is a story behind each product
- handmade is made by real people