Dec 24 2006

Pottery Fresh from the kiln, The Coffee Loft, Fairhope Alabama

Webb Pottery Stoneware Mug for The Coffee Loft, Anne Webb 2006 Annually I make a series of custom stoneware mugs for The Coffee Loft, one of two coffee shops in and around Fairhope, Alabama, on Mobile Bay’s Eastern Shore. Located on North Section street, this popular spot attracts a broad range of people, mostly on account of the excellent coffee and customer service, but I think also because of the wonderfully laid-back and eclectic feel of the place, a far-cry from the typical impersonal cookie-cutter style coffee franchises that have crept in and popped up everywhere.

You can usually find something a little different to look at everytime you go in, whether it be some new art for sale by a local artist, or even just the people who walk in the door (i told you it was a diverse crowd). Just yesterday I popped in (for some real coffee on my way home) and on display was a new crop of whimsical art by Ameri’ca Jones Gallaspy, Gloria Tullos, and a few others.

Webb Pottery Stoneware Coffee Mug for The Coffee Loft, Anne Webb 2006They serve freshly brewed coffees, teas, baked goodies, sandwich wraps & other fare made on-site. They also have a nice assortment of coffee beans, ground coffee, and teas to choose from. (My fave to get are the chocolate covered espresso beans!)
The Coffee Loft is located just down the street from the Eastern Shore Art Center, at 503 North Section Street, Fairhope AL
(251) 929-2299

Comfortable & roomy seating. Lots of parking.
Good Hot Coffee
Open 7 days a week.

Dec 21 2006

Webb Pottery: Coastal Artisans, Potter Charles Smith, Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Anagama Opening

Well Christmas is right around the corner and December seems to have passed as soon as it came. There were a lot of pots made in between illnesses and the different obligations and distractions that typically pull you away when you have 2 small children.

Our much anticipated Coastal Artisans Art Show took place on December 2nd (the invitational art show that we had been busily organizing since early last spring) and I am so very pleased to say it was a great success, thanks to a lot of elbow grease on everybody’s part, great community support, and, of course, a buying public. It was a very positive experience and imminently rewarding. We have a really personable and eclectic group of artists and I feel very fortunate to have been able to get to know them over the last several months. I really look forward to working with them again next year. In case you who were involved are reading this blog, I wish to thank all of you who participated and to everyone else who so generously helped us make everything happen.

Designed Stoneware Tripod Vessel by Charles SmithOne of the members and a co-founder of The Coastal Artisans, is Charles Smith. A native of Mobile, Alabama, he is one of the region’s most well known, widely recognized, and certainly respected professional visual artists. He is a true craftsman with a shrewd business sense, a great sense of humor and a heart of gold. Some of you may be interested to learn that a number of video interviews with Charles have been posted on YouTube, where Charles reflects upon technique, design, and artistry, among other things. To view these eight videos, including a slideshow of some of his pots, go to http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=smithpots.

Something else that has gone on in the early part of the month, as mentioned in my previous posts…… On Saturday Dec 16th, the Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Society had the official opening of their anagama kiln. Sadly we weren’t able to make it over be there for the event, but not for lack of desire (my 4 year old brought home yet another cold from school and this time, everybody here got it.). According to a recent email from Marty and Brenda Stokes, the firing took 5 days, as it did last year when Brian Harper helped them fire it. I can’t wait to see the pictures and, with any luck, a video of the event on their web site.


Nov 15 2006

Pottery: Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Society video clips of the Anagama

Further to my last post, and upon searching upon the newly updated Kiln Walk web site, they have four or five great and informative video clips about their 35 ft long anagama kiln and the firing last year that are bound to get your woodfiring juices flowing – the construction, bricking it up to fire, as well as other tidbits from Brian Harper and Don Reitz.

Brenda and Marty Stokes have worked very, very hard in the last 4 or so years at getting the Kilnwalk Society going (including donating a piece of their land for the project), and I can’t personally think of any better ambassadors for such an endeavour. This is one of the most exciting things that has happened to our part of the Gulf Coast potterywise and its open to everyone, not just academics.

(Remember their second anagama firing is coming up in just 3 weeks.)


Nov 6 2006

Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Society, Anagama Firing, & Masterclass

The Gulf Coast Kiln Walk Society, out of Navarare, Florida, has some pretty cool and exciting things coming up this fall, including the second firing of their 32 foot anagama kiln which they built and fired for the first time last year.

Mr Masayoshi Shimizu from Iwade City, Japan, will be arriving November 27th to orchestrate the firing which will take place the first week of December.

Events relating to the firing include:

  • Dec 2-4 – Glazing and loading of the kiln
  • Dec 4 – The Ceremonial Lighting of the Anagama Kiln
  • Dec 16 – 9:00 am Kiln opening
  • Dec 16 – 9:00 am – 4:00 pm – 1st Annual Woodstoke Pottery Festival

While the deadline for members to submit a piece to the firing has passed, its a great opportunity to and see a master at work and find out what the excitement of an anagama firing is all about.

Mr Shimizu will also be holding a master class and slide presentation at the University of West Florida on Wednesday, Nov 29.

As per the Kilnwalk calendar, please note that all events are free and open to the public. Please click on the links above or call 850-939-2744 for more info.

Hope to see you there!


Oct 31 2006

Art & Pottery: Art Shows & Sales in Gulf Coast Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida, this weekend

The first weekend of November is always a popular weekend for art shows andsales here on this part of the Gulf. If you’re looking for something to do this weekend, here are but a few of these events to check out:

  • This Friday night, Nov 3rd, between 5 and 10 pm, Main Street Mobile will be closing down Conti Street again and opening it up for the evening to the arts. ArtsAlive! on Conti Street is a bi-annual event, usually held in May and November and is a celebration of “visual, performing, and written arts” as well as local artists. Please refer to their calendar for more info.
  • Fri Nov 3rd through Sun Nov 5 – The Great Gulfcoast Arts Festival , Pensacola, Florida
  • Sat Nov 4 & Sunday Nov 5 – The Peter Anderson Festival, Ocean Springs, MS

Oct 16 2006

Nan Coffin & Richard Burkett Pottery Exhibit in Indiana

Please check out this exhibit by Joe Molinaro and my good friends and Nan Coffin and Richard Burkett at the Charlie Cummings Clay Studio and Gallery in Fort Wayne, Indiana:

http://www.claylink.com/currentexhib.html

This exhibit runs from Oct 6 until Oct 27th. Unfortunately we have already missed the date for Joe Molinaro’s free lecture at the gallery: “Evolving Traditions and Outside Influences Facing the Ecuadorian Amazon.”

Richard Burkett teaches at the University of San Diego and Joe Molinaro teaches at Eastern Kentucky University. Joe, Nan, and Richard have spent extensive time doing research in Ecuador working amongst potters and collecting their work.


Sep 23 2006

Webb Art Pottery Stylized Art Nouveau Oleander Design – Raku Vase

Webb Raku Vase - Stylized Art Nouveau Oleander

Vase with Art Nouveau Stylized Oleander Design
Incised design, Raku fired

Approx 12″H x 6.5″W

Anne Webb, Webb Pottery, 2006

Recently listed on ebay: Item #130030461617


Sep 16 2006

More Links – Pottery, Ceramics, & Art Resources, Glaze Calculation

In line with my last couple of posts, here are a few more links for you …just some of the many out there.

NCECA – National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts.
The Ceramics Web – a Database of all sorts of resource links, datatbases, and material put together by SDSU’s Richard Burkett
Clayart Archives – Clayart, the popular ceramics email chat group originally put together and moderated by Joe Molinaro and Richard Burkett, now moderated by Mel Jacobson, is still going strong after 15 to 20 years. Instructions to become part of the Clayart discussion group, as well as the archives of all posts since Clayart’s inception can be found on this site (www.potters.org). Discussion on just about every aspect of ceramics.
Arts, Crafts, & Theater Safety – Find out a little more about Monona Rossol, one of the leading authorities on studio and material safety.
Hyperglaze – Glaze Calculation Software & Info, Richard Burkett
Insight – Glaze Calculation Software & Info, Tony Hansen & Digitalfire
American Ceramics Society
American Craft Council
Southern Arts Federation
Southern Artistry


Sep 15 2006

Pottery, Ceramics & Art Magazines

I mentioned in my last post how isolating working alone in your studio can be. As any artist knows, the arrival of a new catalog or magazine can sometimes put a little more wind to your sails just when you need it.

On more than one occasion I have had beginner potters come into my booth at a show with that hungry thirst-for-knowledge look in their eyes, excited to see anything made of clay, and sometimes even more excited to meet the artist.

There are so many great magazines out there that offer informative articles, tips on technique, calls for entry, upcoming workshops and conferences, as well as info on suppliers and new equipment available.

I’ve compiled below for those budding new artists, collectors, and anyone else interested in clay, a short list of some of the more well known (in North America at least) publications with links I’ve found to their web sites.

Clay Times (cover pictured here)
Ceramics Monthly
Pottery Making Illustrated
Studio Potter
Art and Perception (Australia)
Ceramics Technical (Australia)
Ceramic Review (UK)
Critical Ceramics
American Craft Magazine
Art Calendar


Sep 13 2006

A Plethora of Pottery Books & Videos from The Potters Shop

Working alone in your studio can be a lonely existence at times and the arrival of new catalogs and publications gives us potters a chance to find out what is going on out there in the clay world and makes us feel a more connected member of that community.

For as long I have been potting, I have always been excited to get the latest catalog from The Potters Shop . A few times a year they would send out their thickly folded pastel colored catalog with literally hundreds of wonderful books, videos, and a selection of tools, to pour over and discover as I unfolded each section. I could always count on finding something that was new, or at least new to me, and at a good price.

Steve Branfman, a veteran potter, seasoned lecturer, and author of books such as Raku: A Practical Approach and A Professional Potters Handbook, runs The Potters Shop out of Needham, Massachusetts, along with his wonderful staff. They don’t just sell books, but it is an actual working studio with a gallery, classes, and rental studio space.

You can view their huge selection of books in their Online Catalog, or you can contact them directly for one you can hold and read offline.
Here is their contact info:
The Potters Shop – 31 Thorpe Road, Needham MA 02494
info@ThePottersShop.com (781) 449-7687 fax (781) 449-9098