Photos and reporting by Robert Kokenyesi, Ceramic Artist, Beachfront Pottery, Godfrey, IL, 62035, USA. If you enjoyed this post, then give me a “like” on my Facebook page. There is additional information about Beachfront Pottery on my web site.
One thing I repeatedly experienced while snorkeling and scuba diving is how surprisingly animals can appear in my view. Out of the blue, from behind me,from above me, from under me. Unpredictability, untamability are integral aspects of oceans, and putting that into visual form is what brought about the “Shark Whisperer” series. The unexpected appearance of a shark is symbolized by an irregular, disorganized arrangement of shark teeth. The human expectation of a shark, an orderly appearance, is symbolized by the rectangular, square or spherical geometrical forms. The pieces in this series attempt to bring out the contrast between Mother Nature’s opportunistic way and the orderly, organized human expectation.
The Effort and the Resulting Pieces
These two pictures are showing the forming of the shark teeth out of clay.
This is the view of the kiln after the bisque firing of the clay teeth.
This a bunch of bisque fired shark teeth after a glass firing. To start this step I smeared red glass frit onto the tips of the shark teeth, and then glass fired it in the kiln. If you zoom in you can see the red glass droplets showing up as blood on the teeth.
These two pictures show the sculpture “Shark Whisperer I” at different stages of wax pouring. To show the chaotic appearance of shark teeth, I decided to encase the teeth in wax. With this sculpture the teeth are positioned in hot wax, and when the first layer of wax solidifies new layers were poured on top. The final product is on the right.
This is the sculpture once I removed it from the mold, and straightened the sides.
This bowl was constructed very similarly, except that the mold for wax pouring was steel wok.