Sunday, February 27, 2011

Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers

Do you know about these women?  Have you seen the film "For the Next Seven Generations?"

 here's their mission statement...

"We, the International Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers, represent a global alliance of prayer, education and healing for our Mother Earth, all her inhabitants, all the children, and for the next seven generations to come. We are deeply concerned with the unprecedented destruction of our Mother Earth and the destruction of indigenous ways of life. We believe the teachings of our ancestors will light the way through an uncertain future. We look to further our vision through the realization of projects that protect our diverse cultures: lands, medicines, language and ceremonial ways of prayer and through projects that educate and nurture our children."

Do see the film (and fall in love with them and their mission) ...elder women are powerful forces worldwide!
here's the film's trailer...

OK, back to sculpting clay!

I like Patrick Johnson's 800-456-9009
Eckerd College Ceramics
Works by Alumni, Faculty, and Faculty Emeriti
MARCH 6 - APRIL 8, 2011
NCECA shuttle from the historic St. Pete train station
Thursday, March 31, 6:30-9:30 pm
The New Cobb Gallery at Eckerd College
4200 54th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, Florida 33711
Conference Exhibition hours: March 29 - April 2, 10:30-4:30
Joy Brown
Bede Clarke
Susan DeMay
John Eckert
Robert Hodgell
Stanton Hunter
Tom Judge
Jan Kimball
Alix Knipe
Mary Law
Jere Lykins
Melinda Marino
Devin McDonald
Casey McDonough
Ian Meares
Brian Ransom
Tai Rogers
Scott Ross
Matt Schiemann
Nick Schwartz
Annette Sidner
Jessica Wilson
Adam Yungbluth
Brian Ransom, Tai Rogers ’01, Alix Knipe ’00,
Bede Clarke ’83, Robert Hodgell

FB problems and Black Madonas

In case you also have not been hearing from some of your FB friends, who might have be de-selected without your knowledge!  FaceBook selects who you get to hear from, on your own pages.  I changed my setting as suggested in this article.

I found a lovely blog which I'll start following,

which is where I got Black Madona information and pictures throughout Europe...thanks Carisa.  The pictures are wonderful!  Mary speaks to many of us as a goddess.

The Virgin of Guadaupe is my favorite, perhaps because the symbolism includes some of the Indigenous Peoples symbols.  (see Wikepedia for details)

I love the internet way of sharing information.  Many many goddess postings in all kinds of places.

And pottery too!  I'll try to get back to that soon.  But these blogs tend to be all about who we are...totally.  At least the ones I enjoy are.  Thanks everyone for being, divine!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Divine Feminine

a trailer for a movie on Aphrodite on Cyprus

I hope the movie has been made.

nature inspires me

That's what Erin Campbell said when I asked her where she got her inspiration from.  Most people in the arts say about the same thing.

Here are a few more of my inspirations...

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers

photo by Barb Rogers
May you have a minute in nature today, where you can inhale, in-spire, the beauty she has for everyone to enjoy, no matter how small the detail that she gives you.


Friday, February 25, 2011

beach movies

I had a bit of trouble downloading/uploading, whichever, to the blog.  There are supposed to be 4 clips.  I have no earthly idea how to merge them, nor edit them...but it's nice to share with you the sun, the waves, and the various shore birds!  Enjoy, and turn your sound up if you need to.  Even try a full screen view!

ahhh, retreat

A pristine but cold sunset beach in South Carolina

 Dear anonymous friend gives such a good perspective.

 Is this a postcard or my own photo?

 A friendly seagull who posed for me by the bubbles along the wave line.

Golden sunsets almost every day.

 When I woke up, the sun had been up for a few hours...that's the lagoon in the foreground, about 30 feet below the cabin we stayed in.

A trip that rejuvenated me, that inspired me, and in a while, when I come down to earth again, I'll know that it also restored me.  Many hours of quiet in nature.  Lovely hours laughing and exploring ideas of such natures as to astound my mind.  Of course many hours of driving from my mountain abode to one by the lagoon close to the beach.

Two great friends helped with the costs and the the trip would not have been possible without each of us (my car, their energies).  I am not the same person who left last Sunday.  I came back a Thursday person.  Whatever that means.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Jomon potter women

Let's go back to women potters about 10500 years bc...or maybe as late as 300 bc.
Cording suggests pottery originally copied net or roped vessels.

"All Jomon pots were made by hand, without the aid of a wheel, the potter building up the vessel from the bottom with coil upon coil of soft clay. As in all other Neolithic cultures, women produced these early potteries."

Source: Jomon Culture (ca. 10,500–ca. 300 B.C.)


This is incredible detail of using coils, leaving them as decorative functions.

You may have little interest in all the archaeological data, but look at the pictures.  They are worth a thousand words.  These were made between 10,500 bc and 300 bc...before people there used a pottery wheel.  I love this picture of a rendition of how a potter might have looked working on one of these beautiful pots.

Their goddesses looked like....

"The people of the middle and late Jomon period also used clay to fashion small human figures. These figures were never fully realistic but rather were distorted into fascinating shapes. Called 'dogu,' they tend to have large faces, small arms and hands, and compact bodies.

Here is an article with some great photos about the potters from the Jomon period in Japan.

Isn't it great that women have made utilitarian pottery that included design for all these years?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Robineau: Another Woman in ceramic's HerStory

Adelaide Alsop Robineau (1865-1919) was my art school biographical subject when I returned to get my degree in the early 1980s.  I found it interesting that a young man who recently graduated from college and taught pottery himself had also studied Robineau as a student...all these many years later.  That proves (at least to me) that she's a classic.

Scarab Vase or (The Apotheosis of the Toiler), 1910 in Everson Museum, Syracuse, NY

The Scarab Vase is carved porcelain...and won the Grand Prize in pottery at the Turin International Exhibition.  Robineau travelled from her home town of Syracuse to University City, Mo, where this vase was created in a workshop of potters.  She experimented with many glazes.

Melting Ice

Robineau and Scarab Vase 1910

Bowl, 1924, A.A. Robineau
Small carved porcelain container, located at Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC.

A short article about Adelaide Alsop Robineau may be found here...

Vase with crystaline glaze developed by A. A. Robineau

There is one book on her life that is available, "Glory in Porcelain", and will contain many of the same pictures that I've shown here.  If they are copywrited, I'm sorry...they were posted several places when the pieces were donated, or sold, to museums and galleries, and sometimes private owners.

I love that this woman developed and experimented with glazes, and won an international award for the vase that took 1000 hours to carve, even after she repaired it following some breakage in the kiln. (see the article)  AND she lived at the time my grandmother did, before women could even vote!

She is inspirational.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Potters who came before us

I just discovered another potter had posted this link for a great little video about a potter who I wish I'd known about sooner.  Now I'm off to find out more about her...

Click here to see the video on YouTube Beatrice Wood

 BEATRICE WOOD was born in San Francisco in 1893 and passed away in Ojai, California nine days after her 105th birthday on March 12, 1998. She attributed her longevity to "young men and chocolates."

Wood sspent time in Paris during her late teens. Studying art briefly at the Academie Julian, she was soon attracted to the stage and moved to the Comedie Francaise. She returned to the United States in 1914 and joined the French Repertory Theater in New York. While visiting the French composer Edgar Varese in a New York hospital in 1916, she was introduced to Marcel Duchamp. She soon became an intimate friend of the painter and a member of his recherche culturelle clique, which included Francis Picabia, Man Ray, Albert Gleizes, Walt Kuhn, and others. As a contributor to Duchamp's avant-garde magazines, Rogue and the Blindman, she produced drawings and shared editorial space with such luminaries of the day as Gertrude Stein. In 1933, after she purchased a set of six luster plates in Europe, she returned to America and wanted to produce a matching teapot. It was suggested that she make one at the pottery classes of the Hollywood High School. Of course, she would later laugh about that weekend and reminisce about how foolish she was in thinking she could produce a lustre teapot in one weekend. But she was hooked. She began to read everything she could get her hands on concerning ceramics. Around 1938 she studied with Glen Lukens at the USC, and in 1940 with the Austrian potters Gertrud and Otto Natzler. She remembers being "the most interested student in [Lukens's] class and certainly the least gifted...." "I was not a born craftsman. Many with natural talent do not have to struggle, they ride on easy talent and never soar. But I worked and worked, obsessed with learning." From that time on, Wood developed a personal and uniquely expressive art form with her lusterwares. Her sense of theater is still vividly alive in these works, with their exotic palette of colors and unconventional form. In 1983 the Art Galleries of California State University at Fullerton organized a large retrospective of the artist's sixty-six years of activity as an artist. Remarkably, it was during the artist's nineties that Wood produced some of her finest work including her now signature works, tall complex, multi-volumed chalices in glittering golds, greens, pinks and bronzes. Until shortly before her death she was producing at least two one-woman exhibitions a year and the older she became, the more daring and experimental her work was.

Wood received numerous honors. She was given the Ceramics Symposium Award of the Institute for Ceramic History in 1983 and the outstanding-achievement award of the Women's Caucus for Art in 1987, the year she was made a fellow of both the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts and the American Craft Council which also gave her the gold medal on her 100th birthday. She also received the Governor's Award for Art in 1994, and was made a "living treasure of California" by the state in 1984. Wood took part in hundreds of exhibitions both solo and group since the 1930's ranging from small craft shows, to showing on the Venice Biennale. From 1981 until her death, she was represented by the Garth Clark Gallery. In 1990, her close friend and art historian Francis Naumann organized a major retrospective of her figurative work which appeared at the Oakland Museum and The Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles. In 1997 the American Craft Museum organized "Beatrice Wood: A Centennial Tribute," a touring exhibition. In 1985 Wood published her autobiography, I Shock Myself . She continued to write, publishing many books. In 1993 she was the subject of an award winning film Beatrice Wood: Mama of Dada by Lone Wolf Productions.

Beatrice Wood continued to throw on the wheel until June, 1997. She achieved some of her best lustre works in the 90s. Her last figurative work, "Men With Their Wives" was completed in December 1996 and is currently in a private collection in California.

Source: YouTube

Cat mugs

These mugs were my Christmas gifts this year.  I dare say most of my relatives and friends are a bit tired of receiving ceramics for every occaision.  But it's what I do.  These were fun and somewhat silly...and I tried a couple of them to make sure they worked at least!

One of the cats...I'd forgotten that I experimented with different kinds of eyes.  I still am experimenting!
 A somewhat hedgehog looking feline...well, whatever you want to call your coffee cup is ok with me!

I don't know which one got lost in the mail in California, (of course it had to go a couple of thousand miles, so it could have gotten lost in North Carolina).  So I just gave them all away and they now belong somewhere else...which is a kind of letting go.  Creations are just that, something you make, and then it's gone.

That suits my personality. 

Saturday, February 12, 2011

nature calls

The sun is out, and it's getting warmer.  My first thought as my feet hit the floor this morning was where should I walk?  I know I won't go far going uphill.  I'm sooooo out of shape...or the shape I'm in is out of condition, to be more precise.  I'm still getting over the coughing thing, which I medically dubbed the "crud"...after asking a doctor's oppinion and he really didn't seem settled on one out of three.  No meds, just stayed around home for a bit over a week, hoping that my friends would thank case it was a "catching crud."  I sure haven't felt like doing anything much.

I think it will be fun to see through the woods along a trail, to see down to the village of Montreat.  And to have sunshine on my skin.

I've just enjoyed looking at around 20 clay/pottery blogs this morning.  It was something to do till I warmed up. And it was more inspiring than listening to Car Talk...which I do chuckle with every once in a while.

Muffin, my 12 year old cat, most enjoyed watching a youTube cat in a pot.  I'll try to find the link and post it here for anyone else's enjoyment.

Of course the potter who posted it had a blog site,

Ever so funny and I did keep playing it and giggling.  Muffin had her eyes wide, I think worried a bit about the cat being swallowed by the big pot.

If the sun isn't shining where you are today, just remember it's up there and the clouds are just floating around in front of it.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


A friend and I used to call each other and ask "how are you being?"

She has a rare form of cancer, and is not having good reports from the doctors, so she went off on a trip to the South Pacific.  Good choice.

But the point of our BEING-ness is just that we're always so busy DOING.

We are endeavoring, ever so gently, to be human BEINGs rather than human DOINGs.

It's tough.  And of course we lie all the time when people ask, "how are you?"  It's just too hard to tell them that we're not doing so well.  Or maybe we're close enough to them that we do tell them the truth of our conditions, which usually means a lot more details than they actually wanted.  That's what it takes sometimes.

I'm glad that my doing is actually doing better these days. 

But how is my being?  I have so much I am grateful for...the conditions of my life are not half bad.  Comfort, food, those who love me, fun times.

Being is a state that I tend to not slide into easily.  It takes me setting aside time each day to actually get into a meditative posture, deep easy breathing, and relaxation without any kind of entertainment or diversion.  Then I can say I am just being, totally immersed in the NOW, not thinking of the list of things to do, nor thinking at all.

So have a good being day for yourself today...and don't try too hard!