This 16" x 12" x 0.75" wall-hanging or shelf-display decorative piece was inspired by an evening of photo-taking and standing in amazement of all of the colors and creatures coming to life in the evening in King's Park - Western Australia. Hand-sculpted individual elements bring the piece to life in three dimensions. It features a kookaburra, rainbow parakeets, gum nuts, eucalyptus trees, rose gum buds and banksia as well as other tiny flowers. The frame was inspired by an old barn-wood frame from a friends grandmother's painting.
16" wide, 12" tall, 0.75" thick
art piece/wall-hanging: stoneware clay, slip, underglazes, glazes
This item is one-of-a-kind. My one-of-a-kind work is called 'Heirloom' because somewhere deep inside me it is my hope that you will pass this along through the generations for others to enjoy its unique nature. I also call items 'Heirloom' when I've spent more hours creating and decorating a piece than I could ever truly recover by charging a premium for it. It's part of the process I love. It's part of what makes the medium ever-changing for me. It's part of the challenge of what new creativity might be drawn out and onto my work.
My handmade pottery items are made individually when I "throw" clay on the potter's wheel to shape the basic form. Sometimes I literally throw it onto the wheel head to get it to stick well, but the process in-general is called "throwing". They are turned over, re-centered, and trimmed when the clay has been allowed to dry slightly. Sometimes I also start with slabs of clay that are then hand-built into their shapes vs. on the wheel. Handles and other clay additions are then added and the piece is allowed to dry very slowly to prevent warping or cracking. When the piece is completely bone dry it is fired in a kiln (think big clay oven) to a temperature of just over 1800 degrees F. After this first firing, the piece is then decorated with glazes that a much like a slurry of powdered glass in water and often do not look anything like their finished colors. When the glaze is dry, each piece is carefully loaded back into the kiln to be fired again to a temperature just over 2200 degrees F. This work is considered "mid-range" temperature pottery fired to Cone 6-7 upon completion.
This particular piece started as a flat slab of clay where I added a layer to create the frame and impressed a wooden texture. Next I selected elements from multiple photos I took while in Perth and arranged them into a digital collage to achieve the layout desired. Each element was then separately removed from the images digitally so that I could sculpt them for placement in the sculpted work. Once all of the sculpting was completed (over approximately a month and a half), I finished any minute details and then began the process of layering slips, underglazes and glazes across multiple firings to achieve the colors that popped on the dark evening sky in Perth.
This item is one-of-a-kind. Take care in hanging and use hanging hardware made to support heavy ceramic items if hanging. Professional mounting recommended if hanging is desired. Standard household cleaning products acceptable for cleaning. Please note - additional insurance is recommended to be purchased for shipping this item.