Field – The City – Marble glazing plansPosted: March 30, 2014
I’ve been having a lot of trouble trying to work out how it is exactly that marbles are glazed. I don’t know a huge amount about glaze, but I know that usually when you make a mug or a bowl, you leave the surface that it rests on unglazed so that the glaze (which melts during the firing process) doesn’t stick your object to the bottom of the kiln. I tried to research this using the internet, but there was very little information at all on the subject when I googled “how to glaze marbles”, and mostly got information about people using glass marbles melted down AS a glaze.
When I spoke to Duncan (the ceramics tutor) about it, he was very helpful and explained to me the best course of action was that I should make a clay tray, with spikes embedded in it made out of kiln wire. I could then perch the marbles ontop of these spikes, so they had as little contact as possible with any surface allowing them to be glazed all over. Thinking about it, this is probably why Bennington marbles are known for their distinctive three “eyes”, although it is a shame that there wasn’t any information explaining that to me online.
I have started to make this tray, with a slab of “crack” clay recommended by Duncan (I don’t know why that’s better but I trust his judgement), and sharpening lengths of kiln wire using a hand drill and a sander.