I guess I better get in a few words about my clay works being that I have worked with this earthly material all my life. I found the touch of clay when I was 16 years old and sold my first piece when I was 17. My clearest voice in clay came when I discovered the spiritual nature of Raku.
I became professionally involved in creating sand sculpture because of it elegant, yet simple beauty. It's temporary existence brings a balance to the more permanent works like the stoneware and porcelain clays I've created with. Sand sculpture is a slow and patient sculptural medium and yet I can create a 10 ton sand sculptures in just a few days.
I create works in different mediums, such as Raku, stoneware and porcelain clay, sand, words, music and life. Each materia manifests in its own individual style.
Raku is where my voice speaks the clearest. It evokes an appreciation of the natural order of things that are fresh and uncomplicated. Raku espouses the spontaneity of events, almost accidental, where the elegance and uniqueness of "imperfections" may be seen from a perspective of unpretentious beauty. A connection to the elemental transition of impermanence that contacts the primal source of human nature.
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Chasing Raku Shadows reaches into the duality of that which I am consciously aware and the shadows that lie beneath the surface. As a sculptural medium, Raku provides two important vehicles to express the division: first; it evinces a freedom of communication through the earthly nature of clay by releasing my inner voice and freezing the moment and second; the Raku fire consumes my egotistical intentions and releases spontaneous patterns as the work is starved of oxygen and smoked in the fire. The results combine the shadow and light into one.
This Time-Lapse Sand Castle
was created in August 2011
on the Margate, NJ beach
by Professional Sand Sculptor John Gruber.
It is approx. 5 feet tall and took about 5 hrs to complete. For tips on how to create a sand castle please go to the How To link on the sand castle page.