|...This is my favorite of the bunch. It has been donated to the Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts for sale at the Watershed 25th Anniversary auction, July 14th, 2012.|
With less than 3 weeks left in the spring semester, I look forward to getting back into the studio with limited interruption. Of course, this also means limited income, but, with any luck, a pending commission will ease the pain of living (and staying cool) during (yet another) a southern Louisiana summer.
A truly good teapot can be elusive, therefore making it a challenge worthy of much time, effort, and hollered profanities. (*shakes fist at roof*). First and foremost, many of the most beautiful, interesting, and challenging teapots tend to exist primarily as sculptural objects that just happen to also pour tea...often not very well. Before you object, let me say that I'm not pointing fingers here nor claiming any moral high ground. I've made (and continue to make) some teapots that require the user to really have to want to use them to make tea. Sure, they'll function, but there is a difference between function and utility.
|...spouts too small, without enough angle.|
The thing is, those pots tend to be pretty darn good teapots. They hold enough for several cups of tea, they pour well and (hopefully) won't drip, and their lids fit. All in all, they deliver.
Therein lies the challenge of crafting the teapot. The architecture of the teapot is fairly complex: handles must balance with spout and body, spout must integrate with body, body must have the proper proportions, lid must fit, finial or knob must compliment the form. In other words, it has to look good. Or, at the very least, provoke some thought and interest. Oh, and then the thing actually has to work!.....and that's a lot to ask of a little pot.
|..this spout may be a bit long for my taste. 'could use more curve.|
Fortunately, there are lots of contemporary potters in the world who manage to achieve this balance. Mark Shapiro and Linda Sikora, are the first two that come to mind, along with Lorna Meaden, Allegheny Meadows, Tara Wilson, Sarah Jaeger. And, one of my personal all time favorite potters, Mary Louise Carter. There are many, many others.....I should have included pictures, but a quick Google search of any of those folks should put you on the right track. Happy potting!