My Upcoming Workshop at Donkey Mill Art Center

This October I will be teaching a 2-day workshop at the Donkey Mill Art Center in Holualoa, which is on the Kona side of Big Island. I'm really excited about sharing some techniques that I've learned and hope some of you can attend this workshop, or share with people whom you think might be interested!


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CERAMICS: FORMS WITH MOLDS AND PATTERNS WITH SUZANNE WANG

DESCRIPTION

Title:  Ceramics: Forms with Molds and Patterns with Suzanne Wang
Instructor: Suzanne Wang
Schedule: Saturday - Sunday, October 6 - 7, from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Level/Prerequisite:  All Levels (teens 14+ welcome!)
Tuition/Admission: $220 Member / $275 Non-Member
Supply Fee:  $60

Full description:
Expand your vocabulary of forms using styrofoam molds and patterns with Big Island ceramicist, Suzanne Wang.  Suzanne will demonstrate slab plates and dishes using drape styrofoam molds and fabrics. The use of patterns will be demonstrated with a handbuilt slab vessel. Finished examples will be shown. The importance of proper handbuilding technique and repetition will be emphasized to result in a series of quality pieces which looks and feels consistent. Important factors such as air bubble/warpage prevention and structural integrity in joining will be addressed. We will also explore surface treatments, including the use of slips and textured fabrics. 

Students will be given styrofoam blocks and taught how to create their own mold forms which they can keep for future use. Depending on their level of experience, students can choose to make a plate, serving dish, or slab vessel made from their mold or designed pattern. The second day will be spent continuing on students’ work and finishing pieces.  Final pieces will be fired and glazed after the workshop ends. 

Supply fee includes:

  • ½ bag Cone 6 White or Red Clay

  • Bisque & Glaze Firing

  • Use of all community tools, glazes and underglazes

  • Styrofoam

  • Sandpaper

  • Sur-Form Tool

  • Rasps

  • Fabric

Students should bring:

  • Pencil and sharpie marker

  • Utility knife (box-cutter style, retractable with snap off blade)

  • If available, thin scrap fabrics no smaller than 16” X 16”. Fabrics can be netting, textured fabrics or hemp, as long as it is stretchable and thin. Large pieces of fabric are desirable, and can be cut down to size.

  • If available, personal rasps or surform/sanding tools

  • Personal clay tools (sponges, fettling knife, scrapers, needle tool, trimming tools)

  • Apron and/or clothes to get dirty in

  • Water bottle

  • Sack lunch

Minimum Enrollment: 5
Maximum Enrollment: 12

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Group Clay Exhibition & Pottery Sale at EHCC

Opening December 1st, Hilo's East Hawaii Cultural Center is having its first Annual Big Island Clay Exhibition. I'm so excited to participate in this group show with over twenty other ceramic artists! It will be the first time EHCC will be featuring a ceramics-only exhibition featuring Big Island artists. It is a great opportunity to experience the wide range of styles on this island. Along with my work in the exhibition, I will be selling at the pottery market happening upstairs on both days. My table will be in one of the corner rooms next to the lanai. There will be some new soda fired work, along with some Oribe ware that was made in Japan. Come visit and enjoy the festivities on First Friday and Saturday, and also celebrate EHCC's 50th Anniversary with lots of music and events happening on both days!

To read more about EHCC: https://www.ehcc.org/

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Interview on the Collective Podcast

This past summer I had a podcast interview with Ash Thorp about my experience studying pottery in Japan. My bad for waiting so long to put this up. It's a long one...hope some of you enjoy my babble.

"Ceramic artist Suzanne Wang joins us this week to tell us all about her year-long apprenticeship under a master artist in Japan. After giving her craft full focus and dedication, she now has time to share how her journey went, what she learned along the way, and where she plans to take the lessons learned moving forward."

Upcoming show at Keio Department Store, Tokyo

For more information and translation in Japanese, please read below.

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During my one year of pottery study under Ken Matsuzaki, he had a profound influence on my work. I began to understand on a deeper level the importance of the materials, which I was able to learn about in all its various stages. His masterful creativity, work process and approach towards presentation helped strengthened my discipline and focus. During my last few months in Japan, I was given the generous opportunity to create a collection of Oribe ware, using his clays, glazes and firing methods. Also included are some pieces which were fired in his noborigama kiln. Characteristics of the Hawai‘i landscape emerged as I tried to capture the playful spirit of Oribe ware’s shapes and glazes. Our two island cultures have a strong affinity. Learning about Japanese pottery in Mashiko, and my teacher's way of life as a potter, has been a life-changing experience, for which I am deeply grateful. 

Many thanks to Ken Matsuzaki and Mashiko Pottery International Association, for making this experience possible.

ごあいさつ

 ハワイ州ハワイ島に住む私は、島の自然環境と色々な文化が共存する社会に刺激を受けてきました。魅力的な形態や生物が溢れ、様々な民族の文化が入り混じるハワイ島では、それらが私たちの食や美術、工芸にまで深く根付いています。東アジアの芸術と不完全な美に強く影響を受ける私は、形や土の質感を追求することに情熱を感じており、コイルやたたらによる手びねり、またはろくろで構造的、あるいは抽象的な形を作り、単なる機能的な器ではなく、時を超えて持ち手に親しまれる作品作りに努めています。古いものと新しいもの、フォークアートとコンテンポラリーアートの感性を融合させることで、私の作品が何かを語り、人々の生活に寄り添っていけたらと思っています。

 松崎健先生のもとで学んだこの1年で、先生は陶芸家としての私に多大な影響を与えてくださいました。すべての作業工程において、材料の大切さを深く理解することができました。先生の素晴らしい創造力、求めている表現へのアプローチ、仕事に対する姿勢を目の当たりにすることで、作家として必要な自己管理力と集中力を高めてくれました。日本滞在最後の数ヶ月は、織部作品を作る機会を与えていただき、先生の土、釉薬を使い、窯焚きを学びました。そのうちの数点は先生の薪窯で焼いています。織部の遊び心のある形や釉を捉えようとしていると、ハワイの風景が思い浮かんできたとこを思い出します。ハワイと日本の文化には似た点がたくさんあります。益子で日本の陶芸と先生の陶芸家としての生き方を学んだことは、人生を変えるような経験であり、先生の心遣いに深く感謝をしております。

Apprenticing in Mashiko, Japan

Since July of 2016, I have been studying under master potter Ken Matsuzaki. I wanted to go deeper into the craft, and was fortunate enough to find an incredible teacher that would take me on as a student. My journey is coming to a close next month. Before leaving for Japan and during my second month in Mashiko, director Brett Wagner filmed my experience for Hawaiian Airlines, and this 11 minute documentary aired on their in-flight programming. They like to feature stories about lifestyle, culture or art that connects Hawai‘i to other countries. I am deeply grateful for the experience given to me, and will carry a bit of Japan in my heart when I return home.

Click on the video below to watch!

Upcoming Sale in Kona

My first sale at GPS (Good Pots Studio) in Holualoa!  I do all my soda firing at the residence of Suzanne Merner's, where she has a lovely pottery facility and artist residence that was created about a couple years ago. She also has a small coffee farm on her property, so fresh brew and beans will be available at the event. Holualoa is a beautiful little village up the mountain from Kona, with spectacular ocean views. It has an ideal climate for coffee growing, and is home to dozens of artists and creative types.