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If you've been waiting for the definitive book on naked raku, your wait is done. Here is a book resulting from years of studio work, workshop presentations, conversations, and research. It's the bringing together of a variety of approaches from artists with differing skill sets and technical abilities. Years in the planning and writing, there's now a single authoritative source for information on the practice of this exemplary alternative firing technique.
Guided by Eduardo Lazo's expertise, contributors Kate and Will Jacobson, Wally Asselberghs, Linda and Charlie Riggs, Amber Aguirre, and Dana Bilello-Barrow each describe their personal working techniques. These skilled and passionate teachers withhold no secrets and reveal information gathered from years of trial-and-error experimentation. The book includes virtually every aspect of naked raku from clay types, making ware, slips, colors, glaze, kilns, firing, post firing, and finishing.
The Happy Accident
In working with clay, there's always an element of the unexpected. Eduardo explores unforeseen creative events and examines ways to promote their development, capturing the happy accident -highlighting imperfections. He examines artistic philosophies, creative guidelines, strategies, tactics and influences that form the foundation for the pursuit of perfect imperfection. He says that naked raku began as a happy accident that matured into a true art form. Naked raku was not invented by any one potter; rather, it was a technique discovered worldwide by several artists, almost simultaneously-a happy accident whose time had come. Before launching into a discussion of naked raku, Eduardo expounds on the type of environment necessary for a creative vision to take hold by describing characteristics of creativity and Zen art.
Eduardo has been a force in the naked raku movement and through his relationships with noted naked raku artists, he was able to encourage them to contribute their discoveries to this book. He discusses the principles of naked raku and the various approaches of how you prepare your pots, the slips and the firing regimen.
Instead of reporting on the approaches of the experts, Eduardo solicits their actual accounts and allows their voices to describe their techniques. Kate and Will Jacobson and Wally Asselberghs describe their versions of a two-step naked raku technique, and Linda and Charlie Riggs detail their one-step method. Each artist includes recipes for terra sig, glazes, ware preparation and more.
As part of the related bare clay techniques, Amber Aguirre takes a little different approach to naked raku by creating a glazed effect that mimics the naked raku surface in what she calls Naked Fauxku. In another related technique, Dana Bilello-Barrow describes a tape resist smoke method. Linda and Charlie Riggs then return to describe how they use clay saggars in a raku kiln, followed by a demonstration of ferric chloride techniques and pit-fired ceramics from Eduardo.
Opportunities to Explore
Whether you're looking for information on the creative naked clay processes, seeking technical solutions including raku kiln buying details, or a source for genuine inspiration from the Gallery of selected works, Naked Raku and Related Bare Clay Techniques definitely fills the void.
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