Utsunomiya “Box” Show

In Japan I’m part of a groupshow in the town (“machi”) of Utsunomiya, Tochigi prefecture (“ken”): the “BOX” Show, in the GALLERY IN THE BLUE from the 5th of December to the 14th of December.


This is the invitation.


My box: “To a happy and Long life!”

Some different views. (Click on the image for enlargement).

Gallery House Holiday Show

When you come home after 3 wonderful, incredible months in Japan, there are many, many things to do. Plus, I had a little surgery. But, in the meanwhile, there was the opening reception of the Holiday Show of the Gallery House I’m a member of. It was great to see some friends again I hadn’t see for a while.


Some horsehair pieces are standing in the middle of the show table.

Two 2D gingko leaf horsehair wall art hangings.

(Click on the picture for enlargement)


An overview of almost all the 3D artists cubbies.

This is my cubby with Horsehair ware, Red ware and Japanese Wood fired ware.

Red ware and Horsehair ware.


Some of my wood fired pieces from Japan fired during my wood firing workshop in Mashiko last October 2007.

Sasukenei Kiln results

And now some results from the Sasukenei Smokeless kiln. My little pots were put any where in the kiln for certain fire/yohen effects.

On this little Clover vase you see the fly ash deposits making a glaze on one side and on the other side the vitrification and starting of a glaze, patina by the flames, fly ash and heat, causing the orange and red flashing.


This vase was put in the fire box and was covered with a thick layer of ash of the burned wood.


The foot of this chawan, teabowl, shows the wonderful flashing of the fire and the upside bowl the fly ash and the flashing.


This Shiratori vase shows the drippings of the glaze falling from the ceiling on the clay.

Down Draft Wood kiln results

The internet works better,so, I’ll try again some pictures.

Some pots from Euan’s Anagama, actually, down draft wood kiln. Read his essay about his kiln firing; website given underneath.


The inside of this vase is covered with a Tenmoku glaze.
On the outside, you see the flashing and the lines from rice straw full from an old tatami mat marking the vase.
“The glaze making minerals that enter a kiln with the wood flame in the form of ash and gasses can turn the simplest of pots into expressions of natural beauty by simple virtue of the process itself. The fly ash will cause a coating of glass where it settles on the pots, and the gaseous salts etc will cause the silica in the surface of the clay to vitrify causing orange and red flashing”. From Euan’s Essays:
http://www.d1.dion.ne.jp/~euan/sub5-2.htm


This vase was partial glazed with a Tenmoku glaze. It was at the fire face so the ash built up on the front of the vase and started to form little runnels down the vertical surface.

This little vase was put on its side on shells from which you see the marks and the flashing around the shells. The fly ash deposited on the top/right side of the vase.

Beautiful vase decorated with a Celadon glaze. The fly ash makes the glaze matt and you see the markings of the rice straw with the flashing.

Small Celadon glazed vase from the anagama firing.

Little chalice with the Celadon glaze, some Tenmoku glaze spatters and rice straw markings.

Flying kiln results

I have terrible problems with the internet and so I will try just a couple of pictures each time.

This wonderful vase was fired in the Flying kiln from Wali Hawes and was covered with the seaweed and scrub pads in a former blog. A lot of other chemicals were thrown in the kiln. Some beautiful colors developed. The white smog layer is salts coming out of the vase. The vase also got a lot of smoke from the charcoal put in the kiln.
(Please, click on it for enlargement).

Around the workshop


Thanks Steve, for all the work involved to organize this weekend!


Thanks, George Guine for the delicious meal you cooked for us on Saturday night! We all had a great time!


Total of all the pots fired. What an amount! And with wonderful results!

Throwing demo’s

Kusakabe-san, Euan and Wali gave a throwing demonstration during the workshop.

“Play and do what feels good”

“Use anything to shape your pots.”


“Give a happy feeling to the pot”.

Wali throwing nice and smooth bowls.

Throwing of the hump.

Measuring with your hand and fingers or with a tombo tool.

Pulling a handle from a can, because the mugs were still far too wet.


Throwing a big bowl!!

Wood Firing Results

On Sunday morning, 3 kilns had cooled down enough to open them. Then we had them cool down a little more before taking out the pots. They were still very hot!

Kusakabe-san’s kiln. This part of the chamber had lots of ashes on the pots.

Great pots from the Sasukenei kiln.

Cooling down of Euan’s kiln.

The wonderful results from this kiln.

Opening of Steve’s kiln.

Interesting results form the salt kiln.

Opening and taking out pieces of Flying Kiln.

Nice results from Wali’s kiln.

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Wali’s Flying Kiln

On Friday, Wali started to prepare his kiln and pasted with advertisement paper and wet clay. This kiln will be wood and charcoal fired.

The pasting team: Swanica, Debbie, Jenny, Catherine and Pat and Nicole (hidden somewhere).

My pot covered with seaweed and cleaning abrasive pads and rope to hold it. Seaweed contains a lot of salt and the fumes during the firing will color the clay.

Prepared pots for the flying kiln. (click on pictures for enlargement).

Putting pieces in the kiln.

Closing of the kiln and making of wings.

Drying of the kiln in a well protected area with roof against the torrential rains. It didn’t dry too fast, but still well enough.


Painting of the kiln by Debbie, Catherine and Nicole.

We started the firing of the flying kiln on Sunday morning, because of the heavy typhoon rains. Of course, when it is dark it is more impressive, but nonetheless it was very intriguing to get this big, heavy kiln to fly on chains.


And it did! Steve, Wali, Nicole.

Wali, the pilot!

It was a good take off!


Titus, Catherine, Wali, Jenny, Jenny, Dave, Graham, Euan, Swanica, Laura, Steve, Rob and Nicole.

Wali’s website is: http://www.walihawes.com/index.php

Wood Fire Salt Kiln

On Friday, the grounds and leveling for Steve’s salt kiln were being prepared and he started laying out and building his kiln in the pouring rain. He doesn’t use any mortar, so, you can easily take down the kiln.

Building the flues.

Steve built the floor on which the wood and ashes will fall through the holes. Air will pass through the flues and the holes to give full combustion.


Explaining his plan to local potters. They are amazed as we build kiln which fire very fast compared to their kilns with about the same fire effects.

Bars in the fire box for the wood to fall criss-cross to get full combustion.

Closing the fire box.


Building of the second level: the pot chamber and the chimney.


Inside of the chamber.


On Saturday morning, we filled up the kiln.

Steve and Rob fitting and putting the pots in with the help of Kate, Steve’s wife.


The kiln is filled and covered with insulation and extra protection for the rain.

Finishing the chimney.

Euan, Steve and Kusakabe-san.

All this is happening while the other 2 kilns are cooling off. Euan’s kiln finished firing at 1.30am and Kusakabe-san’s kiln at 8am in the morning. Wali’s flying kiln is being build at this moment too (in the next blog).

Starting the fire!

The fire starts well!


Protecting the watch/check holes.


Flames shooting out of the chimney! The firing was done around 8pm Saturday night, and had taken around 6 hours!

His website: http://www.mudslinger.me.uk/