Monday, March 22, 2010

Ceramics Annual of America

Ceramics Annual of America
Just a heads up to ceramics fans out there; this is happening in San Francisco this fall. From their website:
"The Ceramics Annual of America (CAA) is an unparalleled exhibition, the first event of its kind in the United States. On par with events like the Korea World Ceramic Biennale, or the Ceramics Biennial at the Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche in Faenza, Italy, CAA will showcase one of the largest and most diverse exhibitions of ceramic art in North America."

More Info:

"Organized by the California Ceramics Cooperative, a group of
invested regional ceramic artists, CAA will bring together an
impressive number of the nation’s top ceramic artists, instructors and
collectors. The Cooperative’s mission is to establish an exhibition
to promote the artwork of ceramic artists in the region, thereby
increasing exposure of the artists’ work and creating a larger market
for the ceramic medium. Major ceramic art annuals or biennials exist
in 27 countries, including Italy, Taiwan and Korea, and we believe now
is the time for us to move forward with organizing one in the United
States. The Ceramics Annual of America, expected to be an
unprecedented event of its kind in this country, will provide a venue
for regional and national artists working in the clay medium to show
their work to a broader group of collectors.

The inaugural exhibition is scheduled for September 2010 in Herbst
Pavilion at Ft. Mason. Ft. Mason, as the site chosen for this event,
embodies the essence of San Francisco—its nearness to nature, combined
with the novel architecture, gives a nod to the past and offers a dose
of the different. Fr. Mason offers one of the few San Francisco
waterfront venue rentals and is a major draw for national and
international visitors to the city. Herbst Pavilion, a 30,000 square
ft. hall, can accommodate as many as 3,000 visitors."

Their website is:

P.S. If you have an ceramics event in the Bay Area you want to promote let us know and we will review it for publication on the blog. Thanks!

P.P.S. If you would like your ceramics blog or website listed in our links let us know what it is and we will add it.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Paragon Microwave Kiln Demonstration

microwave kiln

Paragon asked the pros here at Leslie's to develop a Raku firing process for their microwave kiln. After a few tests we managed to raku and even bisque in the kiln. See the youtube video here:

Here are some details from the paragon website:
Paragon MagicFuse Microwave Kiln

Paragon’s exciting MagicFuse kiln fires inside a microwave oven to glass fusing temperatures. This is the perfect way to introduce yourself and your loved ones to the amazing world of glass fused jewelry. Create stunning jewelry that your family and friends will treasure. Experiment with the huge selection of stained glass colors available from your local glass supplier. The microwave oven

The MagicFuse requires a microwave oven, which is not included. The voltage, watts, and amps shown in the specifications below are for a typical 1100 watt microwave oven. Since the MagicFuse does not contain heating elements, the electrical specs will vary depending on the microwave you own and the country where you live.

If you remove the MagicFuse kiln after the glass has fused, the heat will not build up inside the microwave oven. The MagicFuse reaches higher temperatures than you will ever encounter in your kitchen. But the firing is so rapid that the heat does not have time to work its way to the outside surface of the kiln.

You can fire the MagicFuse in the same microwave oven you use for cooking as long as you clean the microwave oven after each fusing session. If, however, you fire ceramic fiber paper, you might want to fire glass in a separate oven. This is because the fiber paper produces fumes.

Controlling heat distribution

Firing the MagicFuse kiln on the microwave's food rotator tray produces better heat distribution inside the kiln than firing without the tray. However, in some microwaves the rotator tray jerks as it turns, moving glass pieces out of position. If this is a problem with your microwave, either use a different microwave, or remove the rotator tray and rollers from the microwave. If you cannot remove the rotator parts, then turn the rotator tray upside-down, and place 3 of the ½" ceramic posts that came with your kiln on the tray.

Accessories included with the kiln

Includes 6 - ½” ceramic posts, glass separator, and a 15-page 5 1/2” x 8 1/2” instruction manual. (You can read the manual on-line by clicking the link near the bottom of this page.) Place the kiln on 3 posts inside the microwave and on the other 3 posts for cooling.

Extra supplies you will need

Microwave oven with metal interior that is at least 8" tall inside, 12" x 12" ceramic tile or ceramic kiln shelf, heat-resistant gloves, 1" paint brush for applying glass separator, notebook for keeping firing records, glass cutter, and clear safety glasses.

If you are interested in a magic fuse kiln we carry them at Leslie ceramics as well as all the other equipment and raku glazes you will need to fire it. Get your own today.