Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Finnegan brings woodfire ideas to the Cape

Kim Medeiros of The Barn Pottery and I will be in Boston tomorrow morning to pick up the traveling Daniel Finnegan at the airport. Dan's coming here for a couple of days of wood kiln consulting with Kim and me. We fired the Truro train kiln of the Castle Hill art center last fall and fell in love with woodfiring; Kim for the first time, me resuming a longtime relationship with the fire.
I've got bricks, Kim's got space ... and of course there's more to it than that. But we think we can make this work, and Finnegan will sit down with us for a couple of days and look at kiln designs and help us make some decisions. Pretty exciting.
Regular readers know that Dan and I worked together years ago firing the kiln he and Bill Van Gilder built in Maryland. I was the nearly ignorant stoker, of course, a pottery student of Dan's. But I learned a lot in firing that kiln and later kilns in Pennsylvania, Colorado and here in southeastern Massachusetts. Then I got my gas kiln working and for five or six years didn't stoke wood.
The plan Kim and I have started to put together would create a kiln with roughly 45-50 c.f. of stacking space, allowing us to fire together or separately. We both make pots fairly quickly. But a kiln that size will also allow for guest potters and for sharing the space with the numerous potters here on the Cape. Other than that ... we're not sure about specifics. With luck, when Dan leaves Friday for his Michigan workshop we'll have a much better idea.

The photos: Top, the fire; Mr. Finnegan in a Cape Cod teaching moment, this time in Chatham.


Tracey Broome said...

There is a Penland workshop this year with your name on it! When your kiln is done, I'm sending some work up there to fire, haha!

Hollis Engley said...

I've heard about the workshop. Wish I could do it. But right after that, Dan heads this way to do it again up here. And you're welcome to send anything, Tracey.

Dennis Allen said...

Keep us posted. Pictures a plenty please.

cookingwithgas said...

Make sure you stock up on some veggies while Dan is there and be sure to let him know that Mark would have come along to eat Dan's share of Seafood and hand some bricks.
Enjoy! M

Michèle Hastings said...

Oh to have a wood kiln in my backyard. Someday.
I miss being able to wood fire on a regular basis.

The year before John died we fired some pots in Bill's kiln in Gapland, MD. John and Bill went to high school together and were business partners in the early 80's.

Dan Finnegan said...

All this explains why I'm up at 6AM!

Hollis Engley said...

Catching that early plane, Daniel.

powen liu said...

I also just began to do some wood firing, but I am not brave enough to move on to that direction yet. I am looking forward to see your new works from the new kiln.