Daily Conversations by Shawn O'Connor
February 10, 2012
MudFire Gallery presents "Daily Conversations", a solo exhibit of original wood fired pottery by Shawn O'Connor of Minot, ME (pop 2607). Opening on February 10, 2012 the gallery will come alive with the warmth of flames captured for all eternity on the smooth-as-silk surfaces of Shawn O'Connor's wheel thrown functional pottery.
The exhibit and sale will be available online and at MudFire Gallery at 175 Laredo Drive in Decatur at 12:00 Noon on Friday, February 10, 2012. An opening night reception will take place that evening from 5:00 to 9:00 pm.
Work will be posted in preview mode and will be available for purchase online and in the gallery starting 12:00pm on opening day. Shipping is available to all 50 states and Canada.
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More About Daily Conversations by Shawn O'Connor
The most defining aspect of wood firing is the ability to create flame patterns on the surface of the work. Controlling the path of the flame by "tumble-stacking" or intentionally leaving spaces between pieces for flames to pass through can result in serendipitous patterns on the surface of the work. Since this technique and has been around for centuries, much of the wood fired work tends to look alike. The aesthetic of this technique has not changed much or progressed in the last thousand years
One of Shawn O'Connor's graduate advisors challenged him to do something with the wood fire process that had not been done before. Given the millennial history of wood firing, this was a tall order, but one that ultimately resulted in his invention of "Flame Deflectors". These specially constructed walls of clay carved with holes, lines, and geometric shapes allow the kiln's flame to move through and only mark specific surfaces of Shawn's pots, allowing him to literally paint with flame inside a kiln humming along at somewhere around 2500F.
The pieces in the "Daily Conversations" exhibit are painted by the flame, colored by the kiln atmosphere, flocked by ash deposits, and speckled by erupting impurities. But it is their texture that really makes them different from any other wood fired work we have seen! Shawn's pots are incredibly smooth to the touch, with an almost burnished feel. All the glory of wood-fire, without the scratchy surface. Now that's a conversation you don't hear every day.
Included in the show are numerous functional works including bowls and mugs alongside spectacular teapots and one of a kind jars and serving dishes. Not to be missed are Shawn's oatmeal bowls, a fresh twist on a grueling subject!