This past week we installed our new art exhibit. We are very proud to host Vicki Konover as our first guest artist until December.
Vicki studied sculpture and drawing at the University of Denver prior to her graduate study and a career in Clinical Social Work. After 25 years as a clinician, she has returned to her primary love, combining sculpture and drawing with ceramics to form a multi-media art form. Vicki maintains a studio in her home where she creates her bisque ware. She is affiliated with Canton Clay Works in Canton, Connecticut, where she does her glazing and firing. Konover specializes in low fire techniques, particularly saggar and raku. She occasionally utilizes high fire techniques, often in reduction.
Saggars are vessels that enclose other pottery inside of a kiln. They were original used in the Orient to protect ceramic pieces during the glaze process, protecting the glaze from ash generated from the burning of wood and coal as fuel for the kiln. In this case, no actual glaze is present and the “saggar” is made with aluminum foil. The surface of the clay is covered with Terra Sigilatta —a very fine particle clay slip that is applied to the bone dry clay and then polished by hand. The piece is coated with a chemical or inorganic compound and copper wire, wrapped in its saggar with combustibles & salt, and fired up to 1400 degrees F. The result is a glossy or semi-gloss piece of pottery with a mottled explosion of color mixed with rich black markings.