Posts Tagged ‘coilware’

Coilware vase

So finally, here is my coilware vase, lately referred to as the termite mound vase, in all its matt blue-grey glazed glory. Coilware is hand built using sausages of clay layered up and ‘glued’ with slip and then smoothed together. It’s an easy construction method to learn but getting a finished object that doesn’t look like a primary school child made it is harder than you’d think! I’ve made plenty of coilpots before now but they are all relegated to being plant pots or pen holders, this is the first one that is decorative enough to not need a function. The key was using the clay drier than usual – I was scared it would have air bubbles in it and explode when it was fired but the firmer material meant it wasn’t prone to sagging during construction and kept its shape better. I’m really pleased with the subtle ribbing and the textured glaze, it feels lovely as well as looking it, and I always think the best pottery makes you want to touch it.

If my experience of visiting Pot Fest is anything to go by, coilware isn’t an awfully common construction method among professional potters, I guess because it is so much more time consuming than throwing and therefore tends to be very expensive, but I was inspired by David Wright.

Vase by David Wright

It was a year or two ago that he had a whole bunch of coilware bottles on his stand at Pot Fest Scotland and he seems to have moved on to more rounded or abstract shapes in his latest work, but here’s a picture of the most similar design I could find on his website. You can see how my glazing was influenced by his style if not the shape.


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