Saturday, February 26, 2011

Saggar-fired, from Thursday kiln

Over the years, I've fired a few pots in sawdust-filled saggars inside the gas kiln. John Leach's saggar work was the original inspiration for doing this, and he remains the master of it. But I like what I get from this kind of firing. Covered stoneware saggars take up a lot of room on a shelf, producing a few small pots in a space that can usually hold a dozen or more. And I don't know what the market will be for these, but I enjoy the experiment.
And it seems to me that the best pots fired this way are simple forms. Anyway, we'll see where this goes. I'll do more.


Dan Finnegan said...

Hollis, those are real beauties!!! The first one has such a cool handle and I like the texture on the second a lot. Make sure they have a big fat price...then you can do more.

imagine said...

You mention John Leach as being the master of this technique.
Many years ago on a visit to John's pottery he suggested "let me show you something". He then went into the loft above and came back down with a small group of pots, some were wood fired porcelain the others unlike anything I had seen before.
Black and white pots, fired in a sawdust filled sagger.
I loved all of them and purchased a few, even though John explained that they were not made by him but by a friend who had stayed for a few months, someone called Byron Temple.
At the time I had never heard of him but I loved the pots, and on that visit they were all I left with.
John told me that he was going to "have a go" at the black and white style.
A year later I was invited to an exhibition of his work in London, and there for the first time I saw a John Leach black & white pot.
I purchased a small bottle [which is now broken but glued together] which I sometimes look at.
Whenever I do I think to myself "that was Byron's idea". Something that is now John's signature piece.

Hollis Engley said...

Hello, John. I knew Byron a little bit. I fired with him a coupleof times at Bill Van Gilder's kiln in Maryland maybe 15 years ago. I had no idea he had played around with that method. Just goes to show you that there is nothing new. It's all been done before by someone.

janet said...

Too much modesty Hollis - those are real gems, not just"Not bad" - love the steamer neck handle on the first jug.