urns

Last year I had a conversation with one of my oldest friends about making an urn for her, when the time comes.  She wanted an unfired piece that would return to the earth along with her ashes.  Later that summer, I made an urn for a college friend for her mother.  Then, when my dear friend Papatya died, I made several small urns for her family to divide her ashes.  Since then I've made several pet urns, including one for my Birdy.  I was happy to make them, especially in small sizes, for pets.  Much less happy to make Papatya's, but glad that I could.

Saturday we received a phone call that our son's best friend lost his father.  It was very sudden, and we were all very sad. When his son, who is much like my own son, told me that his father wanted his ashes sprinkled at the Mississippi River, I offered to make a keepsake urn for his family.  His wife, who is also a good friend, requested a water/river theme.  Her husband grew up on the water near Boston and loved running on the river here as a young man. 


This week I threw three large lidded vessels and yesterday after I trimmed them I began thinking about River.  Rivers defy precision.  They aren't necessarily neat and tidy- a little wild, untamed.  I brushed iron oxide-heavy slip that I made from the clay I dug from the banks of the Mississippi on each of the pieces and let them run a bit.  The gray color you see here is a cobalt wash.  I plan to coat the pieces in a sheer blue to let the darker colors come through.  Working this loosely is a challenge for me, but I'm excited to see how they turn out and which piece the family will choose. 

I'm honored to make this for his family and also glad that urns are not my main product line.

I didn't make a pitcher this week, so next week will be a 2 pitcher week.
Hope you all have a good weekend.