Saturday, December 5, 2009

You'll Pine for These

(Re)introducing the masterful work of Swedish ceramicist Per Lilienjren. We are fortunate enough to have acquired more of his mind boggling ingenious designs. Last year we had 3 pieces which sold within weeks of arriving in our shop via our friends in Denmark. We are told that because of the intensity of the labor, these are among the last of this meticulous style of pottery he has produced- some 10 odd years ago.

Each piece is hand-thrown pure white stoneware clay. With a small knife he carves each individual shape (he calls them "leaves"). We estimated around 1000 marks on the tallest vase seen here (around 10"). To organize the pattern symmetrically he draws guidelines with a pencil. He starts carving at the top of the vase and works downward, needing to cut rather quickly before the clay becomes too dry. The method is challenging and demands strong technical skills and incredible patience. Often he works all day and night, going into some kind of meditative state while carving. Well, we certainly are entranced!

Each piece needs to dry before the first firing. The glaze is then applied and fired a second time. Then, yet another coat of glazing before its fired for the third time. JUST SPECTACULAR.

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