Gallery, Life and Studio of a 60 year old: 74, How do crystals grow?

How are you?  I thought I would write a short post today featuring a friend’s crystalline pottery.  We sell his unique vases on our website.  Do you know how crystals are grown on pottery?

Dark Cobalt Crystalline Vase by Brooks Bouwkamp

Brooks Bouwkamp works in porcelain clay.  He fires his vases twice.  The glaze kiln is fired to 2350 degrees fahrenheit.

Did you know?

After the peak temperature is reached the kiln is allowed to cool to around 2000 degrees F. This temperature is maintained for three to six hours. During this holding cycle, crystals form in the molten glaze and begin to grow. The longer the temperature is held the larger the crystals will grow. Then, the kiln is allowed to cool naturally to room temperature. We empty the kiln and it’s almost Christmas! Due to this special firing process, he can not control exactly where the crystals grow, but he can control their size, shape, and color. Each vessel ends up being a unique one of a kind piece.

That’s all for Wednesday’s wisdom – a little information about ceramic technique.  Take care, Cyndi

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