RAKU Firing with Ray Bogle, Second Saturdays, 10-2pm $90, various dates
Discover the fire and drama of amazing raku with a firing by raku master, Ray Bogle. An outside raku firing is the most exciting and dramatic of any ceramic firing technique and yields some of the most spectacular glaze effects in the ceramic repertoire.
For a District Clay firing with Ray Bogle, bring 6-8 bisqued pots and transform them into raku masterpieces. Ray will start your session with background on raku and raku firing. He will show you how to glaze your plots and give your instructions on participating in the exciting firing process. Once the firing starts, you will be a integral part - manning the raku kilns, handling the reduction chambers, moving pieces from one to the other and finally removing the char to discover your luminous creations. (See important Safety Note at bottom.)
During winter, dress warmly and we offer complimentary hot coffee, tea and hot chocolate!
Details: Max 6 participants. 6-8 bisqued pots, each no larger than 6" wide x 10" tall. No platters or large bowls. District Clay will supply three glazes - one copper red, one turquoise, and one clear for your use.
Participants must follow DCC COVID Safety Guidelines, including wearing a mask at all times, including outdoors.
Our weather policy is that raku events will NOT be cancelled for cold but may be rescheduled in case of inclement weather.
IMPORTANT SAFETY NOTE: A raku firing is an (exciting) participatory process that requires you to follow specific rules and directions in order to stay safe. You will be given thorough training, supplied with heavy mitts and tongs, and will be directed by Ray throughout the firing process.
You should know that, as with any raku firing, you will potentially be exposed to extremely hot ware and kilns, fire and smoke from reduction chambers, as well as sharp edges from glazed pots. Any raku event could potentially result in serious injury including burns, smoke inhalation and cuts.
By taking this class, you acknowledge the risks involved, and agree to hold District Clay and Ray Bogle harmless from any injuries incurred during the workshop.
Working with clay brings me peace. This peace comes from working with my hands to quietly and gently guide the clay into simple but elegant forms that are pleasant to view and hold. While I have control over the forms, I have to let go and trust the firing process where flame, fumes, and smoke work to help each piece “decorate itself” with random but interconnected flowing black lines, dots of smoke and/or wisps of color. Each vessel is complete when it brings peace to a new home.
Ray has been working with clay and making pots as a hobby for over 30 years. His first exposure was in high school and while he enjoyed the class he had no idea what impact this stuff called “clay” would have on his life. Following high school, he joined the Air Force where he was able to further hone his pottery skills at nicely equipped Arts and Craft centers.
Over the years, he’s explored most pottery aspects and techniques, but many years ago settled in on wheel thrown Raku pieces. He found the “interactiveness” of this technique intriguing and enjoyed the immediateness of the process. It also provided a method to learn about kilns, reduction firing, making glazes, and seeing what occurs in a kiln during the firing process.
While he still makes some Raku pieces and enjoys sharing this technique with students, he has explored other related low temperature firing techniques such as Pit and Saggar firing. His current work is focused on a Naked Raku, a variation of Raku where the finished pieces have no glaze and Saggar fired vessels where clay, plants, raw chemicals, and flame are combined to produce a vessel with a wonderful organic look, and when waxed, the form with its satin finish just begs to be held. In the Summer of 2013 he built a gas kiln at his studio and began to study the history of Japanese ceramics.
He’s currently a member of the CalvArt Gallery in Prince Frederick Maryland, teaches pottery classes at Annmarie Garden, and conducts private lessons and occasional workshops at his studio in Huntingtown, Maryland.