378 BROWNSTONE: Elmhurst
Elmhurst is a clay body that fires into both light to deep browns with a high amount of grog/speckled roughness in it. It is typically hard on a potters hands to work with a clay that has more grog in it because it tends to blister the hands. Just imagine rubbing your hands against a rough 200 grit sand paper repeatedly. The benefits from the added grog is that it makes fired pieces stronger and also allows larger pieces to be thrown on the wheel.
The 378 Brownstone was introduced to me after studying the natural elements of clay and understanding the process excavators go through in order to craft objects out of clay. After my study I wanted to use this clay for its natural and earth like feeling, similar to rocks. I believed that this feeling connected me back to the root of excavation, then to the root of the earth and back to my home roots. The colors of this clay body reminds me of home, a neighborhood in Queens, NY called Elmhurst. If you are ever there you can see how much the palette of browns within this clay flourish there.
The use of this clay body came after Stone (Little Loafers) clay. The first kind used to produce and sell objects here at Utility Objects.
LITTLE LOAFERS: Stone
This porcelain like clay body is cream/ white in color.It has a zero grog which gives it a very smooth and soft texture.
Little loafers is the first clay I used for Utility Objects because of it’s similarities to the smooth clay that I worked with in my undergraduate studies. The more I began to use the clay the more uninterested I became with the work I was producing because of it’s plain smooth surface. Using this clay I I started to be more interested in experimenting with mason stains (A process used to color the clay body) in order to make my work more interesting. . Later, I started to research more about the properties that make up clay and then I became fond of minerals and stones.
The color of this raw clay body before the incorporation of mason stains reminds me of a blank painters canvas and after I introduce mason stains it becomes a collection of stones on paper.
The use of this clay body was the first used for the shop.
The Gardena clay body has a light to medium brown pigment (as pictured above). It has a small amount of grog with a smooth texture making it a pleasure to throw and form with.
The Brownstone was introduced to me by accident actually. I was looking for 378 but the clay supplier I go to was out of it at the time. I was pretty much itching to throw so I got a bag and started working with it blindly. In it’s wet form, this clay is reddish brown like terracotta clay so I was worried about the end result. I fell in love once it was fired and decided right away that I would make vases with it and then functional pieces alongside the 378. Making this decision I realized more so that I really wanted to express the natural clay body of all my pieces and use little to no glazes.
The color of this raw clay body reminds me of my abuelo who calls Gardena, CA home.
The use of this clay body came after Elmhurst (378 Brownstone) clay. The second kind used to produce and sell objects here at Utility Objects.