Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Cady Clay Works Annual Wood-Fired Kiln Opening - Nov 5, 2011

John Mellage is the fellow in the ligth blue shirt. A wood kiln can take a small village to help fire.
Around a month ago friends came into town and we toured them around Seagrove,  NC.  John Mellage and Beth Gore of Cady Clay Works were firing their wood kiln and we were lucky enough to be able watch them stoke their kiln for a few mintues.  They are having a very special kiln opening event this weekend.

Cady Clay Works Annual Wood-Fired Kiln Opening
November 5 Saturday 9:00am - 5:00pm

"Every wood-fired pot is uniquely decorated by its placement in the kiln, the fly ash deposited on it and the flashing of the flame moving past the piece.  Potters John Mellage and Beth Gore enjoy creating different pieces for every firing, giving up control to the serendipity of the kiln process.  They have been working on this year's designs for four months and are anxious to share them with their pottery collectors!

John and Beth made a lot of "kitchen pots" this year, just in time for fall cooking.  New items are soup mugs and "Kara's shrimp and grits bowl" - a wide, shallow bowl requested by Charleston friends.  Returning favorites are dinner plates, salad plates, bowls, mugs, tumblers, goblets, carafes, mixing bowls and baking dishes.  And casseroles are back!  Lidded pieces are tricky to wood-fire because the melting, runny ash can glue the lid to the pot.  John hasn't made casseroles in a few years because he was discouraged by losing several.  This year he made a point to configure the kiln stacks to create a more protected place for them, with good results.

There are a lot of figural creatures in this year's firing.  John and Beth collaborated on owls and chubby hens, thrown by John and scultped by Beth.  Beth also made hand-built birds and turtles from textured and sculpted slabs of clay.

Additonal pieces include lidded jars made of stoneware and porcelain clays swirled together as the pots are turned on the wheel, garden urns, a wide variety of vases, platters and wall pieces.  Over 600 new pieces will make their debut at the Kiln Opening. 

Hot Cider and refreshments will be available for shoppers, as well as tours of the studio and kiln.  Do your Christmas shopping while supporting North Carolina business!
It's hot, dirty, exhausting work.  It's ancient technology.  So why do potters wood-fire?
  "I love clay as a material, and woodfiring makes it possible to show the clay 'bare', as I like it - flashed and lively with subtle color changes." - Nesrin Durin, Netherlands"

Wood is carefully place in the front of the kiln. Wood is the fuel for this kiln.

Friends drop off chili to help Beth feed the folks firing the kiln.

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