Title of Art Piece: Crackle
Category: Ceramics – 2023
Student/Artist’s Name: Seth McClurg
School: Haines High School
Grade: 12th
Artist Statement: This piece is a bit of a personal achievement. Not only was it my first time trying the Raku firing technique, but it is also the biggest pot I’ve ever thrown (the clay used was around thirteen pounds). My goal for this pot was to highlight each of the aspects that make Raku pottery special. First, and perhaps most obvious, was the white crackle glaze (for which the piece is named). The beautiful design was created by the white glaze melting in the heat of the kiln, then contracting, splitting, and cooling in the fiery pit of a metal trashcan. The sawdust at the bottom of the can smoked and smoldered, being absorbed by the porous clay and staining it black, seeping in through the cracks in the glaze, enriching both the glazes and the clay itself. The shiny, uneven band that runs through the white crackle portion was born entirely inside the garbage can where the chemicals in the smoke and the glaze must have interacted in a special way, forming something that is entirely unique to Raku. The black portions of the pot are raw clay, permanently stained by the smoke and soot. The brown-looking parts are a shiny copper glaze which gained a metallic sheen when interacting with the smoke, much like the glossy band.
Artwork Dimensions: 9 ¾” tall, 8″ diameter, 2 ½” opening

Original Images:
1. https://artalaska.org/wp-content/uploads/gravity_forms/52-a6a69575a0bcf9c504f5378a8b3c8199/2023/04/Seth-Raku1.jpg

2. https://artalaska.org/index.php?gf-download=2023%2F04%2FSeth-Raku2.jpg&form-id=52&field-id=38&hash=eec461d24d716da9ad50cc8e1cfd980f57b7ef3436e97712d843842762f8bcff

3. https://artalaska.org/index.php?gf-download=2023%2F04%2FSeth-Raku-3.jpg&form-id=52&field-id=38&hash=5a778e50d72fdda09deb65b6b1a732a049cb736e6a6c49d1e53fc896d3886839