Beautiful plates, bowls and vases made by our migrant brothers and sisters at HealthServe yesterday night.
It was Thanksgiving Day, and we encouraged them to make something for someone they were grateful for. As I cleaned and trimmed their lovely creations this afternoon, I cannot help but give thanks for the very fact that I live in Singapore, in a comfortable and sturdy home built by a responsible government, and that I am able to make a living doing what I love.
These people all have to deal with injuries, joblessness, huge debts, and family crises back home, yet last night they smiled, sang, and encouraged one another, regardless of nationality and race.
If you would like to join us in blessing this neglected community with love and dignity, let us know here or drop us a note!...
Finally some satisfying results from our tests, roughly a fifth of the tiles in this happy little swirl. Our glossy glazes need just a little more testing but we finally appear to have some working mattes!
Lots of credit to glazyorg , as well as Glaze Simulator, for being invaluable resources as I tried to figure out my formulas. There's still so much to explore!...
37 glaze test tiles, in the hope that a few of them will turn out nice!
Recently we refilled a bunch of our raw materials and suddenly half our glazes turned out terrible. Not sure which of those powders was the culprit, or if there was more than one. Also, not sure if replacing them would do any good as well, cos the thing about raw minerals is that every batch can have different levels of purity, and different types of impurities.
Or is it the kiln?!?! Anyway, because raw materials are not cheap either, we decided to work with what we have now, and tweak our formulas to suit the current materials on our shelves. This means several new rounds of testing, each taking 2-3 days, and no guarantee that we will be able to replicate our nice glazes in the past. But who knows, maybe there will be new and beautiful surprises?
Little lesson here. When the unexpected happens, how do we respond? This episode teaches me that the more lightly we hold on to our desires and comforts, the more agile our ship can be, the easier we can navigate the new circumstances that greet us each day. Amidst any failures or unfortunate events, there are always opportunities for discovery and growth!
Really cool to see how these different clays change colour and shrink after firing!
#studioasobi #handmade #madeinsingapore #potter #pottery #sgpottery #sgceramics #artisan #ceramiclife #localclay #testing...
ACROSS THE UNIVERSE
Fly me to the moon
Let me play among the stars
Till I wake, with you
Two more of our bubbles, hot off the oven! Been a challenging week for us, but it's always comforting to open the kiln and welcome something pretty into this world!
Still trying to perfect the making process for these double-walled cups. Due to the challenges of creating a completely enclosed vessel, these have had to be fired three times instead of the usual two. But I've got some ideas, and I'm lookin forward to testing them out.
On a related note, I'm also feeling really thankful that we are running our own studio, which allows us flexibility of time to care for our loved ones, as well as to engage in our own artistic explorations without bosses breathing down our necks. I really believe it is worth all the things we have had to give up. Are there things you could give up too, for what really matters to you?
Testing a spectrum of local clay blends, for a potential project. It took some time to tackle the lack of plasticity in one of the clays. A small percentage of bentonite appears to have helped, but one never knows until the clay comes out of the kiln!
WEAKER VESSEL, STRONGER VESSEL
Shaped by the same hand
One to carry, one to hold
One till we grow old
"Weaker Vessel, Stronger Vessel" is a ceramic sculpture exploring the dynamics of marriage as depicted in 1 Peter 3:7.
The two unique vessels in this creation differ remarkably in size, form and function, yet they blend into a seamless whole. Their visual and physical relationship challenges the viewer to consider what it means to be weak or to be strong, and what bearing this has on each vessel's purpose and beauty.
Painstakingly harvested from local terracotta, hand-crafted, and fired with self-formulated glazes, this work bears the intimate marks of the craftsman at every stage of its journey, just as our lives and relationships are constantly shaped by our Potter's hands.
Words of encouragement mean so much to us and God knows when we need some:) The pleasure is ours to be part of special moments, or to make a difference on an otherwise ordinary day.
Let us know if you would like to plan for a pottery workshop for your family, hens party, teambonding or couple date! We also have participants come alone for some selfcare:)
P.S. The bowl is made by the youngest daughter of this sweet family! How cute is that!
#selfcare #soulcare #potteryworkshop #studiopottery #sgpottery #sgcraft #learningspace #trialclass #sgceramics #potterysg #onedayclass #learningbydoing #experiencing #joyofmaking #studioasobi #singapore #funthingstodo #creative...
Take this jar of clay
And place me where the rain falls
Till I overflow
We are made in the image of a creative God who brings forth new things, and the seeds of possibilities in our lives correlate with our posture of attentive listening to God's leading. This vessel is an invitation to stay open; and to become people in whose hearts will flow rivers of living water. As we face this challenging world, may we stay rooted and firm - growing like strong trees; flourishing as evergreens.
Vessel made specially for bgst1989 .
#pottery #stonewarepottery #potteryofinstagram #potterydesign #potterylove #potterylover #pottery_lovers #potterystudio #potterylovers #potteryart #potterylife #potterymaking #studiopottery #ceramicsculpture #handmadewithlove #singaporearts #studioasobi #christianart...
Journeyed all the way to Bukit Timah to collect this batch of clay for testing, for a potential installation project. Hope it goes ahead, but whether or not it does, we've already gotten a nice gift!...
MOON OVER A CLIFF
What is it like to
Sit at the edge of this world
And bathe in your light?
Here's another one of our double walled moon vases, in the dark, mysterious hue of our Starry Night glaze.
There are no cliffs here in Singapore, only towering skyscrapers where you would probably have the cops called on you if you are spotted sitting at the edge of a parapet with legs dangling out.
But there are places in the world, and far back in my memory, where the moon would rise unusually large, casting the hills and mountains into silhouette. And once in awhile, when there is too much noise around me, I would reach into the depths of my memory and float myself into the silence of a lonely ledge atop a windy hillside, where the moon is so near that I can almost touch it. And, bathed in the coolness of its silvery light, my soul would find peace again.
Stress and anxiety are two modern day bedfellows for many people and they are no strangers to the both of us either.
One of us was depressed before while another of us was a chronic worrier. When help is sought early, things can change and all hope is not lost.
As christians, we find comfort in the words of Jesus, who offers rest in our souls. If you know of someone who is struggling, do offer your listening ear and hold out a safe space for the person to talk about his/her burdens. Encourage him/her to seek help.
As busy city dwellers, it is tempting to let sleep debt accumulate and drive our bones to the ground. There are some healthier habits like setting a good work-rest rhythmn and engaging in fun physical activities such as exercise, cooking, crafting or gardening which are proven to enhance emotional well being.
On this World Mental Health Day, wishing shalom to all of you! Shalom is a hebrew word meaning peace and harmony and wholeness:)
#worldmentalhealth #peace #shalom #rest #harmony #wholeness #wellness #stress #worry #anxiety #depression #safespace #listening #healthyhobbies #workrestrhythms #emotionalwellbeing #healthyhabits #pottery #studioasobi #singapore #singaporewellness #matt1128...
It is pure grace that we are born into a flourishing nation like Singapore, and hence enjoy safety and access to education and work opportunities.
There are approximately half a million of construction workers and foreign domestic workers here, making up almost 10% of our population. They leave their homes for extended periods, seeking to earn more income here to share with their family members.
Starting off with debts, living and work conditions can get rough for some - and it is made worse when they get injured and are left waiting and unable to work.
This is why we decided to volunteer with healthservesg, to do our little part for these migrant brothers.
We would love to expand our volunteer pool for our monthly pottery sesions, but you can also get involved in other areas such as the medical clinics or casework!
We have a pottery session this Thursday (10/10) evening! Tag your friends who may be keen and PM us if you would like to come:) Here is a recent article about our volunteer work: https://www.nationalintegrationcouncil.org.sg/community/stories/story-detail/fired-up-to-do-good
Healthserve is also hosting an Interest Night next Tues (15/10) where you can find out more for yourself about the issues migrant workers are facing as well as the opportunities in which HealthServe provides to help migrant workers. Sign up link in comments section below.
Asobi means play and we absolutely love it when we witness how our pottery workshop participants embrace that in their first time attempts!
Here is one example where she pinched and sculpted her way to form an amazing resemblance of her partner sitting opposite her:) Now we just need to wait for the plant to grow and form his new hairdo :D
"If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in" - Rachel Carson
With Tobie who is turning 2 later this year, we get a chance to see the world through the eyes of a child again and how enjoyable that has been! 🙌
Nature is a wonderful teacher and playground and our hope is that he grows up loving and desiring to protect it.
Childhood is so precious and we wish everyone a Happy Children's Day! May you continue to play (asobi) no matter what your physical age is:)
#children #childhood #nature #love #wonder #protectnature #rachelcarson #play #studiolife #studioasobi...
Before firing, clay vessels look positively dull, but a stunning transformation happens as the vessels emerge from the kiln. As Christians potters, we are constantly reminded that there is something beautiful beyond the horizon of this earthly life, and that even as we are being formed day by day, our Master Potter already knows the masterpiece that we will one day become.
You can't rush things when it comes to pottery. The few times we tried to go faster, we have had to start over, wasting even more time as the pieces cracked. And so we learnt that in life, too, we need to slow down and rest. Keeping the Sabbath has had a tremendous impact on us, and so has our mischievous little son, who is teaching us the importance of play!