Mark Hewitt Pottery > New Kiln 2007

New Kiln 2007

New Kiln 2007

In the summer of 2007, my former apprentice, Zac Spates, built a second big kiln here, helped by a team that included my current apprentices Aaron Weaver, Noah Reidel and Joseph Sand, as well as Clark and Caleb Cappola, and Johnno, C. W. Harris, Keith Bartholomew, John Belovics, Susan Cutter and friends, and Tim Taft and students from Guilford College. Thank you all for your hard work, particularly Zac!

It is a three-chambered climbing kiln, based on a Japanese design, and is a modified version of a kiln built by Kevin Crowe, whose kiln is near Charlottesville, VA. Please view some pictures of its construction.

We built the new kiln in order to separate the two Southern pottery traditions, the old one for salt glazes, and the new one for ash glazes. I have wanted to pursue each tradition distinctly ever since co-curating the exhibition, “The Potter’s Eye: Art and Tradition in North Carolina,” at the North Carolina Museum of Art, detailing the history and contemporary manifestations of the regional ceramic heritage. Previously I had been firing both styles of pottery in the old salt glaze kiln, which produced wonderful pots, but expanding the palette of colors and decorative techniques was limited. Now I’ll be able to explore several new aesthetic directions, for, in addition to the Southern alkaline glaze, the new kiln will allow me to develop other high temperature stoneware glazes.

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