Welcome to the Clay & Glass blog of Meagan Chaney Gumpert! We hope you enjoy your time here!
Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Mixed Media Wall Commission - progress report

Moving right along with that large mixed-media wall commission.

Thanks to two 30-minute naps and one long nap (probably brought about by today's visit to the pediatrician for more shots. boo for the shots. yay for the long nap!)

The 23 ceramic forms are complete and hung for a quick layout review. (Well, the ones that would fit on my design wall are hung at least)
Now, I'll be moving on to making the cast glass and steel pieces. That's what's gonna go where those circles are drawn.
I might have started 2 months ago, but I'm making progress none-the-less. And, afterall, slow but steady wins the race!


Hey - Want to see other posts of this project. Check here and here.
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Sunday, January 30, 2011

What comes next...

...bust a move!

Had a great week back in the studio! Actually, I was amazed how much I was able to get done.

My studio time has become precious, and I'm learning to make the most of every minute. When I walk in that door, it's on! I thought I was an efficient, productive worker before. Oh no! You haven't seen anything yet!

So, with my wonderful in-laws in town babysitting, I worked in 1-2 hour shifts between feeding Cooper. All 23 of the clay forms for that commission are finished.

And I have 40 new Mini Sculptures in progress to send to The Society of Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, PA. (No photo just yet, sorry!) Hoping to fire by this coming Friday.

I've got a lot of other big changes going on that I plan to share with you soon, but I'm still processing some of them, and will try to squeeze in time to write about it asap! (Fingers crossed "someone" takes one of his long afternoon naps tomorrow!)

Anyway, I'm off. Laundry is calling my name.

Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Monday, January 17, 2011

Baby Steps towards a Big Commission

Well, I brushed the cobwebs of my newly acquired "mommy-brain" and headed down to the studio for a couple hours yesterday.

I have a large commission due the end of April, and it's time to get started on it!

Normally, a ceramic and glass wall sculpture this size would take me about 6-8 weeks. Since I will now be squeezing work time in during Cooper's naps, between feedings, on the weekends, or when my in-laws come down next week to babysit (Thank you Betsy and Al!), I've broken my tasks down into smaller, more manageable sizes.

My goal yesterday was to sketch the piece to size. Check! (It's about 3 feet high and 8 1/2 feet long - my design wall is only 6'.)
And make the paper patterns. Check!
The next phase of the project will be to roll out the clay slabs. Two slabs will be cut from each paper pattern - one for the back of the piece, and one for the domed/puffy front.

I figure I can get one, maybe 2 patterns cut out during one of Cooper's (brief, ugh!) naps.

Ok, off to get some sleep while I can. Thanks for reading!

Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Unsuccessful but Necessary

Well, I unloaded my work from the kiln on Monday. As usual, it takes me a few days to look at and process the work.
As soon as the work was cool, I eagerly rushed off to Lowe's to get the necessary hardware for assembly. Back in the studio, I quickly started to thread the bolts, washers and nuts into place. It didn't take long for me to realize that I was up against some serious technical difficulties! Ugh!
I had anticipated being able to tighten the hardware enough so that the pieces would stay snugly in place. This, unfortunately was not the case in 2 out of 3 new works. Even with rubber washer to help absorb the force, the ceramic pieces wanted to spin about in all directions. Great if I was making a windmill, but not so much for a stationary hybrid-flower-type form.
Though I am disappointed with the outcome of this work, I still feel it was a HUGE learning experience. And I've been able to go through that learning curve much quicker because of the focus I'm able to get during this residence.
I am reminded of a quote from the book Art and Fear - "Even the failed pieces are essential."
So, with that in mind, I'm off to the studio to make and learn more!

Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
Febe Baldwin Steehouder commented on 22-Jan-2016 04:02 PM
Dear Meagan,
Love your site, thank you for the insights!
When I saw these works the first thing that crossed my mind was: Why not try to replace the crews with stringers of glas? Maybe you get a nice glasmelt screw?
I'm very new at all of this but I could not resist sharing this.
So excuse me if I make a very dumb sugestion.

With kind regards,
Meagan Chaney Gumpert commented on 16-Feb-2016 09:13 AM
Thanks for your suggestion Febe! If I drift back to problem solving this body of work, I will definitely consider using glass rods for the joints.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

September Summary - School, Studio, Stress, and Success

"Some of the brightest days start out cloudy, some of the best endeavors start out tough, and some of the most wonderful experiences start out challenging. " -Unknown

September flew by and was nothing less than a challenging, exiting month...

Since starting the ceramics post-baccalaureate program at the University of Florida, I've found myself repeating the above quote quite a bit. It's almost become a daily mantra.

I am a creature of habit. Adjusting to a new schedule and routine has been challenging. The commute to campus is challenging. (I hadn't realized I would be spending 10 hours a week in the car!) And pushing yourself to make new, thought provoking, exciting, innovative artwork is a constant, but necessary challenge.

Some days I feel overstimulated and want to begin everywhere at once. I leave class with so many ideas, it's tough knowing which to investigate first. Right now though, I'm trying hard to absorb as much as possible, without filtering anything too soon.

There's been a lot of sketching and researching happening as I investigate new concepts and forms. Most of my ideas still seem unresolved, but the prospect of new, better work keeps me going strong.
Meanwhile, work continues in the studio at home. Progress is coming along nicely on this sculpture commission. Here's the scale drawingand a few of the unfired forms.
My obsession with glaze testing also continues... I wanted to see how my glazes reacted when overlapped and layered with each other. I did a series of 17 of the 12" test tiles using 42 of my favorite cone 04, low fire glazes. (Only 5 tiles are shown in the above picture.) There were some fascinating results that I cant wait to put to use in my new work!Test tile with more overlapping and layering of underglazes, terra sigillata, lowfire crawl and lizard skin glazes.
So, life and art continue. I don't know about you, but I'm looking forward to the many adventures October has in store. (That, and a little bit of pumpkin pie!)
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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