Firstly. As mentioned before, I present to you the Royal Poinciana Tree. Hundreds of these on the island showing their true colors right now. Simple beauty ya know, small moments of observation- take it in.
It finally came! The studio upgrade, the fire chamber, the pottery blazer, the art transformer, the... ok Im getting carried away. But, Im excited. We bought a brand new Kiln from L&L KILNS and it finally completed its journey from the factory all the way down to Mile Marker 1. We've been blessed with expansion and I have each and every customer of ours to thank for your participation, we have momentum building up and its a positive feeling you know.
Still, its important to overstand a balanced perspective, keep it humble, and realize its just 'stuff' and can be blown away in the next big storm.
So lets have a moment of rejoice amongst ourselves family, deeply fulljoy a smile and a peace... ah yes.... :) thank you all so much...then,
Back to Work!
So, about these four elements.
(Yes, Im about to get metaphysical on ya....but its not without reason. We live in an incredible place at an incredible time and it merits a good ole mystical thought. )
Four elements from ancient description: FIRE, WATER, EARTH, and AIR.
Now, its not as though the ancestor was 'primitive' or uneducated as certain academics would have you believe. This is ourselves in our current form, under different technological circumstances. It wasnt the popular belief that these elements were what physically constructed all matter (the way we think of 'elements' today), you need to think of them in the more ethereal sense of 4 forces, or better yet, 4 personalities of the force. (gosh I love italics) . Im fascinated by the fact that the observation of these forces is common to soooo so so many ancient cultures. This idea is one you can really run away with in deep thought. These forces/powers do actually seem to be present in most things including ourselves, and I could have a whole blog livicated (not dead) to this topic but I know your bright people so lets move on.
The potter is concerned with almost only the manipulation of these four elements. The EARTH is most obvious as the clay, purely earthical. Careful and precise control of the moisture/workability of the clay is the skill obtained over years/generations of practice and observation -- this is what a potter is really doing in the nuts and bolts sense of things-- this is the fundamental manipulation of AIR and WATER. Of course FIRE is what we add to set a permanence to the mixture and in the end you have... a vessel. The art, the sanctifier, and the value.
The alchemistic process of turning dirt into gold.
So the alchemist was the magician of old. No slight of hand though, not a trick. The technical definition of alchemy makes it seem like these were ignorant people who were trying to make some type of magical life potion. However, when you really look beneath the surface you'll see that this is actually the art of self mastery cloaked in (pre-chemistry) chemical language.
From the Wiki on Alchemy
"It supposedly involves the manufacture of several substances with unusual properties, as well as improvement of the alchemist. Some alchemical sources treat the various substances, equipment and processes in an allegorical sense, as metaphors for a spiritual discipline..... "
In any case, I know thats what the role of the potter/artist/craftsman is in this day.
It is to take the natural ingredients of earth and internalize them deeply, mix them using skill and science, interpret them via the self so they can be articulated to a collective....create value from the valueless using the ingredient of self mastery. This in turn grants self mastery to the potter/student/painter,writer/seeker/singer/etc. Alchemist
When we know ourself more, we bring an end to bobble head toys, and fast food, and pollution and junk stores and senseless
die-versions of various media while simultaneously giving LIFE to the greatest aspects of human kind.
But I got to say, it is up to us alone. They take art and music out of school everyday and you cant see it on tv. So, ... you know what to do.
I had originally been familiarized with this four elements idea by the Navajo Potters in the American Southwest. They were traditionally women and their pots are incredibly detailed and beauty-full. I had the opportunity to explore a serpent mound not far from canyon des chelly a number of years ago and there were pottery shards ALL OVER the place. We were asked not to remove them but rather pick them up, enjoy a look and then put them down again... which in many ways has made their effect on me more intense.
Ive said it before and Ill say it again, pots can make you think.
Theres a danger in this whole 'blog' paradigm... where I say everything and you say nothing. I never try to stand on a soapbox and preach, never tryin to be didactic or patronizing.. just one mans perspective, seen? Engage the conversation anytime.. would love it to hear you. Yall cats read my blog 300 times yesterday. I encourage your comment and criticism. Really felt a need to say that after seeing how many times the last post has been read. Wheeew, I feel better now.
Lets create a cypher here, let your fire burn and air your thoughts, give me something to flow on and lets get rooted together ;)
ps- Snorkels Up! Grandpas in town!