Monday, July 24, 2017

All Gawds Little Creatures

All Gawds Creatures Love Bacon
I made a series of  10 bacon bowls. I’m in a show with Mary Philpott who makes fabulous creatures so I was inspired to fatten up my bacon bowls with some of Gawd’s little creatures.
I have the press mold my Aunt Cavvy made in art school in 1946 of a squirrel so I made some black squirrels and some brown squirrels. I don’t much like squirrels. I figure they are just a common rat with a better Public Relations Agent. It is illegal to shoot them in town so I figure by firing a few to Cone 12 I’ll get even with the little bastards for all the bird food they stole from my feeder this year.  Yummy range fed Premium Quality Birdfood fed brown, black or gray squirrel. Might be tasty in some gumbo.
Then last week when I was at Home County Festival listening to music there was my buddy Chris Snedden pressing out some song birds in a rather nice mold. Hey Chris I love those birds where did you get the mold. “I dunno” he answered. Well the song birds came home to Mr. T and he is slip casting a flock of them with slips enhanced with stains and pigments. I want red, orange, black, blue and white song birds. I’m going to perch them on my bacon bowls and other such pots.
My blue song bird is for Grass. Judi gave me a Zip lock bag of Cobalt tailings from his materials inventory. It is unrefined cobalt most likely from Cobalt, Ontario. That mine has been closed for some years.
As I lined the birds up on my table I was listening to Michael Enright talking to a black sociologist discussing Obama’s contribution.  We here in Canada have flown our own Confederate flag when it comes to First Nations people and the residential school system the Church imposed on them.
I want a white bird kissing a black bird and a white bird kissing a red bird and a red bird kissing a black bird. I want these song birds to be love birds that see no difference in the colour of one’s feathers.  The Blue Bird of Paradise will stand alone as the lovliest of all birds and perhaps who we should all aspire to be.

Shane Norrie Contemporary I have no idea where this show is all going but it won’t be because I didn’t give it some thought. Remember I'm just another one of Gawd's little creatures.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Coffee Culture

Coffee culture has changed. When I was a kid my mum made coffee in a perculator and put Carnation Condensed Milk in it. The Carnation Factory was here in Aylmer across the road from the 1 million square foot Imperial Tobacco Company. Both are now history. 
Herb the milk man delivered milk to our milkbox at the side of the house during the week was invited in for bacon and eggs on Saturday mornings.  Rumour had it that Herb was my father as I am so different from my two older brothers. It was also said that my mum put warm coffee in my bottle as a baby.
Time marches on and so does my addiction to coffee. For many years I used a Bodum filter press for my Joe. A year ago I started using an Aeropress since I only needed to make one cup of coffee at a time and don’t like reheating it. The Aeropress makes better coffee but I found I couldn’t use it with some of my favourite cups that had narrow tops or trimmed narrow bottoms. It won’t fit on the narrow top and I tip the cup over when pressing down with a narrow footed cup.
Remembering one of my favourite pots(coffee pot by lengendary Harry Davis)  in the collection at Judi Dyelle’s I thought I should make some coffee pots to use with an Aeropress.  I figure I should try to make the coffee pot legitimate again. Sunshine Cobb did that for me with the garlic pot. Then I saw one of Bruce Cochrane’s killer garlic pots. I use garlic so why do I hide it in the fridge?
When was the last time you used a clay coffee pot? Such a much nicer presentation of coffee to your guests than a glass press. There are still some us that prefer a teapot to a teabag and a coffee pot to a

 glass jar.

Experience is the comb life gives you after you lose your hair.- Judith Stern writer.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Moving in with Jen

The best readership I ever got on my blog was "Moving in with Dan". Everyone wanted a little dirt on Dan and me. This was perfect my coming out on FB. Sorry to disappoint y'all but  it was about our residency at Starworks in NC where a carnivore and a vegetarian will try living and working together. Before that happens I'm moving in with Jen. Well at least I'll be staying at her house for the weekend during my September workshop in our Nation's Capital- Ottawa. Ottawa is an amazing city. If it didn't have such nasty winters it would be a great place to live.
I feel a squeamish about this pos
ter. I have trouble being listed as a Master potter. I never feel like I have quite mastered this craft. Each time I start feeling cocky about what I'm getting out of the kiln the sun comes up and kicks me in the ass.
I think Canada had or has a group that self proclaimed themselves Ceramic Masters.  When I first started teaching at Sheridan College you were called a Instructor or Teacher and when I was finished it was Professor. Titles seem to be so important to people. It brings them a sense of self importance.
See ya in Ottawa.
Dr. Anthony Clennell

Thursday, July 20, 2017


No this is not a wolf crying “ Fire”. This is the real thing happening in BC where I just visited so many of my friends. BC is covered with trees, trees, trees and more trees. They are also experiencing extreme drought due to “fake”  climate change. The last I heard 47,000 people have been evacuated from their homes. Many will not be returning to a home.
We as potters know the power of fire. Many of us wood firers have felt the burning of unprotected arms or face when stoking a wood kiln at peak temperature. What kind of temperatures the brave men and women fighting those fires may be experiencing blows my mind.  

Send as little or as much as you can to  We pitch in when others in the world are experiencing disaster. I’ve done my part and now I send my love and courage to the displaced people and the heroes fighting these multiple raging fires. The heat and air quality are frightening for me to even comprehend. Be of courage and be safe- Canada!