search  current discussion  categories  safety - toxicity 


updated tue 9 may 00


mel jacobson on thu 4 may 00

one of the greatest legacies that clayart will give to the future
of the pottery world will be the information that is given truthfully
about the safety of ceramics in the home and school.

the biggest myth about clay and glaze is: it is totally safe and fun.
just mess with the earth, mud pies. and we can bake it.

our discussion about leaching, the work of ron, john and others in building
totally safe glazes, the information of monona and others as to the
toxic qualities of ceramics and the control of such elements in our studios
is one of our most important learning tools.

teaching, giving, and learning is what will make clayart stronger and stronger.
the dissemination of quality information, or as we hope, the truth,
what will guarantee our future as a force in our chosen avocation or

when we discuss what articles will do for us, let us turn that around
and say.....`what will the giving of good information do for ceramics?`
we all know how we hate reading the `chest pounding` articles
in any magazine. `hey, look at me, i am wonderful, the best pots
ever made in the history of the world`...usually bullshit.

what most of us like best is the receiving of good information that we
can put into practice in our own studios. how often have we peeked
behind the photos in cm, just to see what sits on the shelves, or
under the cupboards in the potters studio being featured? we all crave
a new idea, recipe, formula that will help make our pots better. when
truthful information is passed, it helps everyone. good science is going
to be the future of ceramics, we have to have the correct information.
not myth. what we do with that information will create the great myths
of the next generations. we have made a difference.

i have talked to tom buck about the need for more ceramic engineers
that will concentrate on ceramic pottery rather than `super conductivity`
or materials science. others at nceca have agreed, and are trying to
make a difference. there is a small movement going on to find young
people that may want to be clay people in a different way.

the balance of good art, science, technique, skills and mastery is what
will give the future a good start. these funny computers that we all have
that give us the ability to interact is a great gift. we have to make
it work for us. it is one of my jobs as moderator to see that junk, breast
beating and ego driven information stays off the cyber ways. i am going
to give that my best shot. and you will all help by debunking the junk.

i have some new ideas that i will be bringing you soon. i did not
want to get involved in the `gift` thing...but, we will be able to
honor our best one day soon. the best gift of all. honor and respect.

what we do every day is important. we must believe that. we are not
children playing with clay. we are a part of the worlds oldest craft,
a part of the great science of clay that has changed the world.

written from the farm in wisconsin

Veena Raghavan on mon 8 may 00

Message text written by Ceramic Arts Discussion List
>one of the greatest legacies that clayart will give to the future
of the pottery world will be the information that is given truthfully
about the safety of ceramics in the home and school............

Your post was a great, so well put and so true. I look forward to
many many years of Clayart (at my age, many many will go well beyond my
presence!). Thanks for taking on the task of moderating this great
exchange. Welcome, however belatedly.

Good luck.


Veena Raghavan