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sv: comment on janet's "virtual galleries etc.

updated fri 24 mar 00


Alisa and Claus Clausen on thu 23 mar 00

As I read Janet's comments, I have found what she speculates to maybe be
true in Germany, can be quite true in Denmark, at least in my community.

There is very little open discussion and sharing of ideas in my parts.
have I experienced ceramists here guarding their glazes, etc. like
great grandmother's secret sauce receipe. I do not know exactly how
I came to naturally consider knowledge something to share, but this
secret keeping orientation was and is at times now, hard for me to accept.
My opinion of clay and anything one needs to know, is we do not generally
need to guard our resources and abilities, because what another person does =
either, will be their work, not yours, and vice versa. I am happy that the
who I instruct have stopped looking at each other as to say I am a Martian =
I give out reciepes or show techniques. I can see that they themselves are
more relaxed than earlier. But there are still some really big secret raku
receipes, etc.
The funny thing is, these secret receipes are sometimes one frit, an oxide
and some wallpaper glue plus water. 10 people are using the same receipe
and all keeping it a secret.

A story that is anecdotal in content, but true, sums up a lot of the secrecy
in ceramics I have met here:
A woman in our community studio, Christa, worked for years along side her =
good friend,
Anne Marie, making ceramics, especially rakuing. They obviously spent =
hours together,
stoking the raku kilns with wood and preparing for the process in general. =
Denmark's national passtimes is =22keeping cozy=22 through the long =
the obvious ways one may keep cozy, Danes like to sometimes stretch out =
like stoking kilns, as to make the time spent together with others =
they made, they made by either coiling or slabs.

Anne Marie made hollow ceramic eggs that were greatly admired by Krista.
Krista tried relentlessly to make eggs as thin walled and well formedin
comparison to
Anne Maries'. Anne Marie never said or coached much and it appears Christa
never had the
opportunity to observe Anne Marie's technique first hand. Anne Marie
unfortunately died
suddendly. Krista, her good friend, was given all of Anne Marie's ceramic
things, in which Krista found Anne Marie's EGG MOLD.

I am so glad for the shared knowledge on Clayart. I hope that
there comes a time when I can contribute as much as I reap.

Best regards,
Alisa in Denmark

... Independence is so important that one does not even talk to
=3Eothers in the same field=21 The great academic/professional and the
=3Eprofessional/amateur divides are also much stronger and important in
=3EGermany. The refreshing thing about Clay Art is that you get potters of =
=3Eages, skills and backgrounds taking part on an equal basis. I personally =
=3Enot think this would be possible in Germany. I do not see a Herr =
=3EDr. of Ceramics in Berlin exchanging glaze recipes and dialogue (in =
=3Ewith an amateur in Bayreuth, although I may be quite wrong=21 Perhaps =
this is
=3Eonly possible in the =22Land of the free and the home of the brave=22?