Sunday, November 11, 2007

A Happy Soda Firing

I fired last week. When I'm done glazing, but before I load the soda kiln, I sit down and roll hundreds of wads for the bottom of my pieces. It always takes a ridiculously long amount of time. Time when I'm feeling a bit anxious about getting things done on schedule. When I was rolling my wads for this last kiln, it was a sunny day, and the morning sun was hitting them in the most beautiful way. I took this picture to share with all of you. My happy spin on a less than fun job.

Wadding Recipe
for the soda kiln (pretty standard) (by volume):
  • 1 part EPK
  • 1 part alumina hydrate
  • medium grog to taste (not really, but you know what I mean...)
I roll my wads ahead of time and put them in a plastic container (the ones from the local Thai take-out place are the best). Then I glue them to the bottoms of pots before loading (Elmer's glue). Breaking up the wadding into steps keeps my hands cleaner and helps me avoid the problem of getting wadding where it doesn't belong.

A shot of the front of the kiln. It was an interesting firing. I reduced the amount of soda that I added by about 25% or so.
(new) Soda Mixture:
  • 1.75 lbs. of soda ash
  • 2.25 lbs. of soda bicarb
  • 4 lbs. of whiting
Mixed together with 1/4 of a 5 gallon bucket of wood chips. Mix together well, then add enough water (while mixing) to the consistency of oatmeal cookie dough. I add it on an piece of angle iron through the ports on the front of the kiln when c. 9 is soft. (More on this in a future post.)

Below are some tea bowls that I got out of this firing.


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Sunday, April 01, 2007

New work by Emily Murphy

A show of my new work is opening on Friday, April 6, at Haus in Chicago. All of the work is soda fired (surprise surprise!), with a vivid palate of colors. The show include some new wall pieces, oval centerpiece vase (like you see below), large square platters and more.
I have been wanting to do this work since last summer, and when the opportunity came up to have a show at Haus, I was really excited to have a place to exhibit the vision that was in my head. I've been working intensely on this new body of work through the coldest and darkest days of the winter- with a longing eye looking towards spring.
I'll give you a little sneak peak of some of the work here on this entry and after the opening I will post some installation images of the show.

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