Jun 09 2009
Phone: (02) 6236 8197
When Ian Jones, master potter for over 30 years, stood before the burnt-out ruin of an historic stone church in Gundaroo , he wondered if he’d truly gone ‘potty’. However, twenty years on, the 1848 structure has blossomed into a beautiful studio gallery known as the Old Saint Luke’s Studio.
In the early 90’s Ian met fellow potter Moraig McKenna. Their passion for each other and pottery saw them combine their efforts in developing a studio gallery for their work. Ian and Moraig specialise in wood-fired ceramics. Pots are earthy creatures so the ash from the wood-fired kiln delivers an end product that is highly collectable in the world of ceramics, particularly in Japan, where wood-fired kilns are held sacred.
Working primarily with ‘anagama’ style kilns and unglazed clay surfaces, most of Moraig’s work is made using a porcelain clay developed especially for wood-firing. A lovely touch is Moraig’s imprint on each of her pots. For Moraig, these marks form a nexus between potter and end user lending a touch of individuality to each piece.
“I have been facinated by the qualities achievable in long wood-firing since first seeing pots from Shigaraki and Bizen in the 1970’s. I have worked with long “anagama” style tube kilns since finishing the construction of a 12 metre long kiln in the mid 80’s. I love the different qualities achievable in the different zones of the kiln. I have recently been having lots of fun exploring a clay based on a local decomposed granite. This clay is mostly suitable for hand building, so I have been doing a lot of coil building”