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192 Jim Boone Rd
Bakersville, NC, 28705
United States

828-675-4097

The central information hub for Michael Kline Pottery, a small one man shop of pottery making in the mountains of western North Carolina.

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The Best of Sawdust and Dirt

A record of the goings on around Michael Kline Pottery!

Filtering by Tag: cousins in clay

Edges

Michael Kline

Cousins

Michael Kline

the cousins in clay: mark shapiro, samantha henneke, michael kline, bruce gholson, sam taylor
it's an early morning for this night owl, but there's lots to do today. the studio is overflowing with pots from XLIII and they await judgment of the pricing kind. this is a most difficult moment for me as a potter. sure, i have my standard pricing structure, but it doesn't account for the slightly unusual, the rare beauty. my daughters have picked out their one pot allotted to them from each firing.

maybe this process of grading should be done by some outside agency, really. price waterhouse? my mind is lost in the fog of expectation, or what my ceramic mind's eye saw as i glazed the pots and placed them in the kiln. lost in a fog of hope and desire.

but their true nature is better judged and appreciated by those other than their maker. (for now) without expectation, instead anticipation, the pots can shine in the eyes of their beholder.  like some sort of serendipity, customers will be excited when they discover them this weekend. just as a potter hopes while waiting for the kiln to cool, he hopes that the pots will be well received. that they will find good homes and be used there.

he also hopes that you are near enough, this weekend, to come to a row of massive oak trees along a mountain ridge just a short walk from the shop and kiln where these new pots will be. in the shade along side many other kindred pots that have come as far as seagrove, nc and as far as western massachusetts, all with the same hope of finding a place in your home.

Funny Numbers and Fresh Clay

Michael Kline












I'm a bit behind reporting on the happenings leading up to the next firing and the Cousins in Clay reunion, but here goes in a matter of a few photos!

I was happy and a bit overwhelmed to have two helpers yesterday, my intern Adam MacKay and his partner Molly Belada. Molly and Adam are undergrad ceramics majors at App State, in Boone. Adam has been helping me every week and Molly has been helping my neighbor, Courtney. After some number crunching and clay body calc, we set up the mixing area where I proceeded to find not one, but two wasp nests in two open bags of clay. Ouch. After some thorough paranoia and nest removal M and A mixed up enough of the fireclay mix that will be added to my red dirt in a week or so (I hope!)

The girls came up with a friend to make some pots (read: show off their pottery skills to their friend) but their wheel was covered with reclaim clay, so I set up my Shimpo banding wheel and hand turned it for them. It was just the thing and soon they were off to the woods to do some exploring and I was back to work.

I'm managing to get some nice pots made in and around carrying out final plans for next months Cousins in Clay Show. There's a lot to do but I'm so looking forward to seeing my old buds, Mark Shapiro and Sam Taylor, and all the pots they will be bringing. Check out our Facebook page to find out more.

OK, time for some lunch, then more pottery this afternoon.

Princess Grae and Queen Anne

Michael Kline







I'm yawning as I try to remember some of the thoughtful thoughts I had during my day. It was a great day, but it's late and I'm fading. [no nap] Courtney and Grae stopped in today and 1 y.o. Grae thought she would help an old guy out and wedge some clay.  Her ambition is amazing! My kids just ignore me when I ask them to do anything. ;-(

I went back to my old way of stacking sections and it was just fine. I have been using the more traditional capping technique for a while now, but I wanted to get a more ovoid shape. With capping I tend to get a taller shape, not as round. I was pleased with the shapes!  I'll put collars on top of these tomorrow to finish the necks.

On my walk home this evening I took some pictures of the Queen Anne's Lace in the field. Seems to be a bumper crop this year. Maybe it's on some kind of super productive cycle this year?! I love the lines of the drooping blossoms and the delicacy of the leaves and flowers. But in the coming days I will have to cut it all down as I prepare the grounds for next month's Cousins in Clay!! Mark and Sam are coming down from MA and Bruce and Sam(antha) are coming over from Seagrove. I'm totally consumed with planning, but it's all coming together and it should be a blast.

Just have to few pots before then!

Once a Cousin, Always a Cousin

Michael Kline

The day is Tuesday according to my phone. But I wouldn't know it, being in a stir from all the traveling and returning home to an empty nest. (except for Jack and the chickens!) Somehow I find myself off the blogging wagon and not quite knowing how to get back on! So I will attempt by telling the briefest story of the past weekend as everything before that is even more of a blur!

I traveled to Seagrove to unpack my pots with the likes of Bruce, Samantha, Ron and Judith. It was all kind of abstract until we all converged on the Bulldog Pottery home base. All the planning and "shucking and jiving" associated with promoting a show didn't quite prepare me for the pottery get-together that we were about to have. It had been a while since I spent any time with Ron or Judith and when they unwrapped their pots it was quite overwhelming! (but, in a good way)

Samantha, Bruce, and I were reminded that this very moment was why we really created the Cousins in Clay shows! We relished every pot and swarmed around Ron's and Judith's tables. Selling and promoting our own work may have been our original intent, and inviting the most highly respected potters in the country to be our guests might have been a way to draw in our NC pottery collectors, but seeing the work by these guests and spending the weekend together has truly become an honor,  a privilege, and a priceless experience.

We have a very big family of clay, and it's great to come together, share stories, and hold each others pots every once in a while. Thanks go to all that helped make the weekend go smoothly and especially to Ron, Hester, Judith, and Royal for making it a very special time.

Cousins in Clay 2011

Michael Kline

OK, Ok, just a short ditty to point you in the direction of the Liberty Stoneware blog and Bulldog Pottery blog for more pictures of the Cousins in Clay/Seagrove event last week. Then it's back to my break from blogging and designing my Mountain Cousins in Clay flyer in time for this weekend's Toe River Arts Council Summer Studio Tour.

That's all. If you would like to continue to hear my pottery, news please subscribe to my newsletter here.

Thanks so much for reading .

The Cousins Are Coming!

Michael Kline





I
'm really excited about heading over to see my pottery cousins in Seagrove this week! Our third annual Cousins in Clay will feature South Carolinian artist Peter Lenzo as well as Jack Troy of Pennsylvania!

Samantha, Bruce and I are VERY excited to be hosting these two amazing artists and spending the weekend together in pottery cousinship! We hope you are planning a trip to the 'Grove to meet Peter and Jack and see their amazing work. Click here for more details.

This year's "Cousins in Clay" provides a rare opportunity for any of you Jack Troy fans who want to come out to Seagrove AND we are having a POTLUCK for Sunday May 29 lunch!

Bring your Jack Troy books, some food to share, we will have a pasta salad and drinks.

I will be demonstrating my special cousin brushwork at 1:30pm

This is a wonderful opportunity to talk with Jack Troy about pottery and see his pots. He will also have his poetry books available! Wooo Hooo!

Come see us!

A Potter's Got To Eat!

Michael Kline


I thought I better take a break from stacking the kiln and have a bite to eat and there's no better way to digest your supper than to sit back a write a few words on ye olde blogge. I've actually loaded 2/3 of the kiln. I am also running out of small pots, fillers. Luckily, I have a board of tumblers and have a few dishes to paint.

I'm getting very excited about next weekend's Spring kiln opening, and the following weekend's "Cousins in Clay" over in Seagrove. (More about all of that in my newsletter going out on Monday.)

Sign up for my mailing list to receive that, if you haven't already.

OK, back to stacking ye olde wood kiln! Firing #38 coming right up! I'll be tweeting kiln side with pictures and more. Follow the firing!

Cousins in Clay Collaborations: Part 1

Michael Kline


Here's a video of moi painting some resist on a bone dry porcelain cup thrown by Samantha for our Cousins in Clay™ collaborative project. It was interesting to handle another potter's pots. The forms of Bruce and Samantha were unfamiliar to my hands and to my brush. I have become accustomed to the forms I make and paint and there is an evolution between the forming and the painting that becomes internalized over time. But handling these Bulldog pots forced me to stretch a little bit. We used Minwax water base Polycrylic protective finish.(clear gloss with green food coloring so we can see it better on the porcelain)

Working with S & B was a blast and I can't wait to see how their crystalline glazes look on their surfaces that I painted. We'll try to continue the narrative with additional videos and stills. If these pots are successful in the end we will have a special online sale. So stay tuned for all of that.

If you would like to view this video in HD (high definition), click on the youtube button at the bottom of the video window to watch on youtube proper and then check the button that either says HQ or 360p, etc. It takes a lot of bandwidth in HD and may be a little choppy depending on your connection. Also, the sound didn't seem to upload (at least not on my computer?? so don't try to adjust volume), sorry.

If you have any questions, just leave a comment and I'll get right back to you.
Enjoy.