Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving 11/25/09

Happy Thanksgiving.

I am thankful for so many things especially - friends, pals, companions, amigos, partners, peeps, compadres, and homeys - thanks.

Today we had wonderful weather, fun, friendship, and an amazing assortment of foods.  Everyone brought something a little different to the table.  My Thanksgiving contribution were sweet potatoes.  

Thanksgiving was great and it helped me realize how thankful I am to have my family, autumn weather, and cranberries.  

Lecture series continues 11/24/09

Tonight JCI was treated to lectures by 9 international ceramic artists.  Each talk was short, but very sweet.  The lectures where informative and for the most part interesting.  Each speaker was very different, and brought something unique to the table.  The lecture hall was packed, it is fun to see so many people interested in ceramics.

Sanbao two 11/23/09

I visited Sanbao once before with a few friends of mine on our bikes.  Today the whole group went to see the area and have food at a popular restaurant.  
The area is really beautiful, very rural and quiet.  There is a small workshop near the restaurant that hosts a lot of international artists.  Today we where fortunate enough to run into some prominent British and American artist doing a raku firing along with students from Jingdezhen and Sanbao.  We had a nice time hanging out, talking, and watching to goings on.

Gaoling 11/22/09

We went on an excursion to Gaoling mountain today.  Gaoling was famous for its china stone.  The China stone (Kaolin) was important in Chinese ceramics because it helped create a more stable clay body, which enabled bigger and more complicated in shapes.

Being surrounded by such natural beauty is always fun.  In the Gaoling village there is a 1000 year old tree - massive.  The weather was the nicest it has been in weeks, which made for good attitudes and hiking fun.

My town 11/21/09

The "Sculpture Factory" had a swine flu scare this week so the Friday lecture was cancelled, but on Saturday The head ceramist Takashi (a Japanese artist) gave a demo and slide talk on building creative thinking, which was really informative, and interesting.
I found a new restaurant that serves really good fried rice noodles with spinach and eggs, and the greatest hot sauce of all times.  The restaurant is owned by a couple, they are so cute to watch as they work together.
The people of China know how to make fresh fish.  These fish in the bucket where sitting in front of the restaurant.

Free day 11/20/09

This morning Aaron and I traveled to the city center to have a look around.  We found these fun sculptures dedicated to the city's traditional ceramic history.  We also went and looked at a few exhibitions.  The work was phenomenal, but I was a little disappointed after I found a room full of really great old work that was just collecting dust.  Sometimes I wonder what it means to be an artist and what role I play and will play in the future.  

Ceramics oh my 11/19/09

Here are some photos that I think are really interesting.

The first is a blacksmith here in the city.  His shop is located on main road which is so contrasting with the rest of the "modern" stores around his.  I stopped on the sidewalk and shot this photo.

Photo number two is from a gallery we visited today.  The craftsmanship of most of the pots here in Jingdezhen is unbelievable.  This work here was no different.

I found a man who makes overglaze stamps out of pieces of foam.  He works out of his bedroom at this untidy little desk, and he charges so little for the stamps that I could hardly believe it.

My buddy Aaron and I found these antique shops.  They were really cool because they had so much stuff jammed into such a small space.