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a new kinda brush#1

updated sun 2 jun 02


george koller on sat 1 jun 02

hi all,

clayart isn't something you just read, its rather more like
something you absorb. and if you keep absorbing it and
don't do anything about it, it can give you a rash.

i'm a guy with a with a technical background and a
artistic rash. when i discovered clayart i couldn't
understand it but i loved it. three years later i still
don't really understand it, but, for example, i know
straight talking mount'n wisdom when i hear it
(mel) and started a mel_folder right from the gitgo.
..... now i have hugged joyce, and chatted with janet
of wales, met bruce g, and i'm working with kurt w.

and i picked uncle tony c's mug first out off the exchange
shelves. so i know i got the taste. and tony h up there
in Alberta, he got me this alfred gig.

so, i'm in month five of a six month grant at the ceramic
corridor innovation center, these days and some 30 more.
net result of working here so far is that we now have a little
slow machine doing now what we have a bigger faster
one doing in michigan some 6 months ago. ahhh, progress.
(but l'il Charley III is scratching and spitting just fine now,
and ready for more show and tells)

yesterday i met with the principles of a new tile company
that is forming here(to be steuben tile). they came in
asking me square feet per hour questions. i was somewhat
ready, and shot back numbers. they seemed happy. but i
cringed inside, and couldn't sleep last night. nope, that's the
world i came from, that's the world i shop at (mostly),
that's the world i know, and that's the world i was trained for.
but screw it all, that ain't the world i'm aspiring to, and
i doubt if its the one that will get rid of my rash.

producing square miles of semi-art, for semi-rich upwardly
mobiles shopping at home depots is nothing to be ashamed of.
and making some money off of all this could give me the options
i want.... blah blah blah. ya, i hardly believe that too. it don't
work that way, do it?

so, i'm talking here about that electronic nozzle that spits in
nanoliters. that's small folks- you can barely see it. we can
control where it is to about 1000'th of an inch. we can fire
the thing upto 1000 times per second if we want to. it seems
reliable - it should run for months on end. and we can
control how long it spits to 1,000,000th of a second. we have
good control of this thing now. and there is no physical contact
with the item we are covering. and the "focal distance" is
very useful - it shoot from 1/10" to 1/2" or even more away -
it doesn't generally matter much.

my software can eat EPS (vector files) all day and generate
miles of machine instructions that will set l'il charley III to
dancing. no problems anymore. i'm smart enough to not be
chasing "photo-realistic" - please don't put me with that stuff.
no, this system can let clay be clay and gritty glazes be themselves
too. so i think there is some real art around that can come out of
this thing.

saving labor is not a direct art "thing": but being able to spend
much more time at the design and still have something that
somebody will pay for, that has to mean something to somebody?

and having software that can turn over millions of photo details
into glaze removing, colorant spritzing moves is not an art thing:
but it does open the door to "heroic" size work that could be done
for the school auditorium, or whatever, and no longer require an
oil shiek to finance it. that's got to be interesting to somebody?

so i'm going to be here at alfred for a few more weeks at
least. all of june. july would be on my nickels so i'm really
not sure. would hate to miss the sailing season back in
door county. if any of you want to meet this thing here,
just let me know. and it's not like things are "over", there
is a phase 2 of this project that would be about 8 times
bigger, if it is funded. but the square foot per hour thinking
ain't going to go away because the reason they give you this
money is to put more new yorkers to work so they can pay
more taxes. (clever, eh? )

there's just got to be someway to get rid of this rash. so maybe
i can go sailing, and out there somewhere half-way between
wisconsin and michigan pull out my secret beret, put it on,
and run around the decks naked (like soldner would do) screaming
"i'm doing it my way, baby"!

and then maybe i can send janet some tiles that i can i can be proud


george koller
door county, wi
alfred, ny

ps kurt says he has some new "knock your knickers off" work
out of his kiln, but he dropped his camera. ya, sure!

but i'll bet he does.

Kurt Wild on sat 1 jun 02

George wrote:

" kurt says he has some new "knock your knickers off" work
>out of his kiln, but he dropped his camera. ya, sure!"

George - I really did! and as soon as I get the camera back (10 weeks
maybe) I will post photos on my web site.


Janet Kaiser on sun 2 jun 02

Dear George

First of all, I cannot believe your allotted time in NY is almost up!
Tempus fugit as we all know, but five months already?

Secondly, sorry about the rash! :-)

I am afraid I get a rash thinking in nanno-seconds. I mean to say,
1,000th of a second squirts is pretty mind-boggling stuff. I cannot
get my head around the pure physics of it. It would be too fast for
the human eye to see or the brain register! My head hurts just
thinking about it, pure and simple. How can something mechanical work
that fast? OK in theory, but in practice? That really is rocket
science and the thought that tile design is entering into a New Rocket
Age is quite breath-taking to imagine. The beauty of tile is in its
total diversity, but to extend the hand-made quality to everyday
tiling will be a great step forward. Of course the quality will depend
on the current taste of society buying the tiles... Hum... I hope
Disney denies copyright!

But with Kurt on your side, I am sure you will soon find a cure for
that problem and for your rash. I was privileged to get a little
thumbnail of his recent knock-your-knickers-off work which he took
before he dropped the camera. If you can reproduce that sort of
standard in nanno-squirts, you will soon be awarded a medal. If it was
pre 1776, you would be knighted: "Arise Sir George", but that is
another drawback of being an ex-colony >wg<

I believe that the key to success will be getting high-quality
designs, which Charlie III, his brethren and descendants can reproduce
well. It will of course open the field to artists and designers who
have never seen clay, let alone worked in the field. That is the way
it is these days. For good or evil. Once you have provided this new
tool, then there will be a whole new area for others to explore and
exploit. (Exploitation being a positive attribute here).

And finally just let me say it has been a great joy "watching" your
progress. I am sure I am not the only one who did not understand some
of what you were doing, but your enthusiasm has been infectious. We'll
look forward to hearing the conclusion of this great quest.

Kindest regards

The Chapel of Art / Capel Celfyddyd
Home of The International Potters' Path
8 Marine Crescent : Criccieth LL52 0EA : GB-Wales
Telephone: ++44 (0)1766-523570