Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Photos

Here's the wood we did not use the fall firings. We have about 2 cords of hardwood and 3 cords of softwood. The eaves obviously did not provide adequate protection for this amount of snow!

Obviously, the kiln did not get wrapped before this storm! Grrrrrr! Hopefully, we'll get some warm days to get rid of the snow and get this baby wrapped!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Putting the Kiln to bed

Nora and I met with Joe to figure out how best to winterize GreenFire. We'll post some photos once it is all wrapped up like a present. Major snowstorm today (12 inches!). I'll take a trek over to the site to see how it's doing...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Adventure Firing Unloading

Here's part of the crew at the opening of the kiln after our short "Adventure Firing". Added wood ash to the fire box, soda ash to the side stokes. 10 hours of firing.
We noticed soda build-up on the underside of the roof. We will protect the roof (and walls and floor!) next time and into the future...
The firing revealed beautiful orange and rust tones where the wood ash blushed the clay. Soft grays and whites formed when it built up.
Beautiful green jewel tones were created where the soda ash was allowed to build up. This is an extreme example, but nonetheless shows what so many of the pieces were kissed with. We are excited to fire in this way next spring. We will probably put the kiln to bed for the winter, although there is a possibility of one more firing...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Adventure Firing!

The kiln is cooling now after our "Guinness" day of adventure firing. This was the 4th firing of the kiln in two weeks and we tried a number of different things. We fired in about the shortest time possible (7am until 5pm). We introduced wood ash into the firebox periodically. We introduced soda ash into the side stoke holes in the last couple of hours. Here is a shot of our mix of sawdust, soda ash, and hot water being ladled onto flat wood.
Wayne Fuerst loading the soda into the side stoke hole.

We'll unload tomorrow and see the results!

Raku Day at GreenFire

Steven Branfman came by to check out our 3rd firing. Here's an image of his pots being slowly introduced into the raku chamber. We had already taken some pots out and we were in the middle of the wood fire. We warmed up his tea bowls by placing them in the pizza oven for 15 minutes, then sitting them on sill of the raku chamber, and then we slowly pushed them in on thin soft-brick "boats". We then bricked up the chamber, and left them in for about half an hour. They turned out beautiful!
Great shot of Steven and Masakazu in front of the fire door!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Images from the unloading - Firing #2

This shot is from the floor, the passage way from the ash pit to the main chamber.

This is a view of the 3rd shelf, about halfway down the chamber. You can see the small niches on the left, just under the chimney. We got great flashing, ashmelt, and movement in just 13 hours! We are loading today for the 3rd firing, which we will fire for more time, perhaps 30 hours or so. More updates to come.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Second Firing Cool Down

The kiln is cooling down at the moment. Unloading is scheduled for 3pm tomorrow.
A pretty incredible experience yesterday - Firing took a total of 14 hours. Started up with small pieces of wood at 9am. Hit cone 10 around 3pm. Kept stoking for a couple of hours, added in side stokes around 6:30 pm. Ended around 10 pm. Checked the cooling and fully shut down at 11pm.
This is an incredible kiln that could easily be fired by two people, if everything is prepped ahead of time. We'll have picture of the results tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dedication was a success!

It was a wonderful evening, full of words, music, tea, and fire. A description of the event is posted on the Nobles webpage.

We were really happy with how the evening went and want to thank all who came. The ceremonial lighting turned into the first firing and we worked through the night. The kiln climbed really well but plateaued at 800 C, with the wood we were using. Fortunately, I had about a cord of very dry wood at home. We filled up a truck and brought some over. Kiln climbed beautifully after that, easily reaching 1300 C a couple of hours after that (around 11am).

Warren Mackenzie, who has shows at Lacoste Gallery and at the Fuller Craft Museum, stopped by late morning to check out Kusakabe's design. It was wonderful to meet him and his wife - such nice people!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Green Fire Collaboration- Nobles and Harvard

Welcome to the Green Fire blog where we will be bringing you the on going story of the Nobles and Harvard kiln building collaboration. This summer ceramic artist Masakuza Kusakabe conducted a workshop where participants helped build his innovative smokeless wood kiln. This Sunday the kiln with be dedicaded in Makoto Yabe's honor. Makoto taught at both schools for many years and the impact he left as an educator lives on in this new project.