Through coincidence I discovered the effect that could be created when combining two different types of clay on top of each other. The base shape could be precisely cast in a traditional, controlled way, whereas the second added clay behaved in hardly controllable ways. In an open-ended process I examined the power of this technique,observing the own characteristic behaviour inherent to the material.
I used a simple shape for my experimentation that follows two main conditions: it is only bent in one dimension, to keep the addition of a second layer of clay practicable, and it was designed to be a high container, so it would make the effect visible on the outside. The mold I used could be cut in different heights to allow for variation within the process. I tried different techniques of applying the clay: on greenware, bisque and high fired stoneware. When applying the red earthenware, I tried spraying, dipping and pouring and fired the pieces at different kiln temperatures.
In fine Arts, Vanitas is used as a term to express the often still life depiction of contrasting elements of pleasure and fear, of life and death. Earliest Vanitas pictures were simple compositions of only two contrary elements (often books and a skull), but executed with great elegance, enhancing the purity of the two counterparts.
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