HORSEHAIR POTTERY

   

My horsehair pots are hand-formed on a potter’s wheel.  Once dry, they are coated with a liquid clay made by mixing dry clay with water, soda ash, and sodium silicate. The chemicals cause the heavy clay particles to sink and the top layer of fine particles is then siphoned off for use. Up to ten coats of this liquid (known as terra sigilatta) are brushed onto the surface of the pot and then the piece is rubbed to bring up the shine. The flat clay particles reflect the light and make the surface of the pot shiny and smooth with no glaze. The work is then fired to a low temperature in an electric kiln to harden it. Once cooled, it is then fired in a small gas kiln to approximately 1400°.The kiln is then opened and the piece removed with tongs. A narrow window of less than a minute is all you have in which you can apply horsehair to the surface of the hot pot and it will sizzle and burn, leaving a black trail in its wake. The pots are then cleaned and polished with artist quality paste wax. To care for horsehair pots, buff them with a soft cloth. Horsehair pots are decorative and do not hold water.

red horsehair
horsehair vase 2
horsehair vase