Susan Bankert


Since discovering clay I have chosen to focus on the domestic object, objects used on a daily basis in the normal rhythm of one’s day. Each form comes with its own set of rules. The challenge comes from honoring those rules of functional necessity while imparting my own aesthetic onto each piece. My work is thrown on the potters’ wheel. After throwing a form, I then alter it, pushing the walls of each in or out in a slightly exaggerated way, to provide a soft and sensuous line. I use a high temperature white stoneware clay body and fire in a salt kiln to approximately 2400 C. Each firing begins by preheating the kiln overnight. Early the next morning the gas burners on the kiln are turned up to increase the temperature inside the kiln. At a set point, salt is thrown in until the kiln reaches temperature, when the glaze and clay body become mature. The atmosphere of the salt kiln supplies the magical inconsistencies on the surfaces of my pots. The movement of the glazes and the silky salt surface, in collaboration with utility, solidify my love of making functional pottery. I want my pots to posses an inviting, tactile and sensual surface, which attracts both the hands and eyes of the user.