Thursday, November 5, 2009

Vessel Factory 11/05/09

I have been being a bit lazy about my studio time the last few days.  We had some cold weather, but both yesterday and today were sunny, sunny, warm, warm and I played outside a lot during both of them.  Hopefully this weekend I can get my studio hat back on.  

I went for a long bike ride while looking for a section of the city were a lot of pots are made, and I found it.  I have talked a lot about a place dubbed the "Sculpture Factory," now I will be able to talk about the "Vessel Factory."  The vessel factory is just as amazing, there are tons of talented people making amazingly beautiful things in these old warehouse factory settings, the juxtaposition of these two elements makes walking around the place surreal.

The other photos are of a homemade electric kiln, a long day of work, and quite the porcelain shard pile.

Sports Festival 11/04/09

We traveled to the new JCI campus today to the opening ceremony for the Sports Festival, which is a three day event for students to compete in track and field events.
The whole experience was pretty entertaining, because all of the groups were really professional.  They marched in line, had matching uniforms, and most performed some sort of routine.  We had a few flags attached to pieces of bamboo, most of the kids were chain smoking cigarettes, and all in our regular scrubs.  We brought the relaxation to the festivities. 

Tick Tock 11/03/09

The time is getting short and we are all chomping at the bit in terms of making as much work as possible and squeezing Jingdezhen for all the information we can get. 

 Today was a studio day and I rode into the city to pick up some warmer clothes, as the weather has begun to cool off.

Soda Kiln 11/2/09

We fired a soda kiln today.  Ceramics is cool, because firing is such a communal event.  Loading the kiln is like watching a Penn Dot crew - a lot of talk, a little action.  I also love how powerful the kiln is as the temperature rises.

The photos are of Jay (visiting professor from Rhode Island) adding soda to the kiln, and a roaring kiln.

Food Alley 11/01/09

On Sundays our cooks have the day off, so we get to fend for ourselves.  A short bike ride from the studio is this sweet little alley that has been dubbed "Food Alley."  There are little restaurants, fruit stands, and all kinds of little food and drink shops in between.  An interesting thing about the restaurants is that the "kitchen" is usually part of the entrance, so as you walk down the alley all of the cooks are practically standing in the alley way cooking the food.  The photo is of Mr. Lui, he is a really cool guy and he has an English translation section on his menu.  Today I ordered rice and eggplant, it is one of my favorite dishes here - so tasty. 

Happy Halloween 10/31/09

Tonight we had our halloween party.  

This is Dan and Zhong.  Zhong was a robot and all night he danced and talked like a robot it was hilarious.  I have a t-shirt that says robot on it, and so in Chinese class (Zhong is the teacher) people are always asking how to say robot this and robot that.

 The party was fun, but the light was low so the photo came out ever so scary.

getting ready for halloween 10/30/09

We are planning on having a halloween party tomorrow.  Today everyone was getting their costumes ready.  Some people did not try very hard.  

We have Chinese language class every Mon, Wed, and Fri, it is usually a lot of fun.  Our teacher Zhong is really nice, and his teaching style is way relaxed.