1.10.2007

Julia cont. ......and other things.

Here is Julia looking over some work.

I've had to bring myself into MOM land since driving back with many pottery thoughts on Sunday.I'll get to that in a moment.....

Julia spent a good amount of time talking with me about my career and my work. As I think I said in the last entry I basically was there to talk to her "about the meaning of life", which translates into career talk in the pottery world. She did like my pots as far as craft, glaze and appearance but she said that she didn't know really what I was trying to say. I totally got that when she said this. After I explained to her my life, my schooling; she understood the tuff spot I was in. I don't have time to really sit down and contemplate my pots because I'm busy trying to make and sell. We agreed that my kiln building would force me to slow down and re-think my pots since I would be going in another direction and I told her how I had made a plan for myself this year to slow down and just work more on a few forms that needed "tweaking". While in the workshop, we looked at TONS of historic slides , which was fantastic. I felt so cheated in grad school that I did not get this kind of education. She knows so much about the history of historic pots I decided that if she ever taught a workshop on just that, I would try and take it. ( which she said she had seriously been thinking about!!) So...after all those slides, there are some new things I do want to try but most of them are in the same venue of some of my other work so the structural kinks are already worked out. I'll get back to that another day................

Motherhood this week..............getting the kids back to school and Quaid. Poor Quaid for the last year has suffered from horrible nose bleeds. Finally today I took him to a Ear, nose and eye doctor who said basically "Quaid needs a new head". The poor kid has to have his tonsils/anoids taken out plus he has significant hearing loss due to tons of fluid in his ears so he has get tubes put in. ( Joey and I just thought he was ecnoring us when we would have to ask him 3 times to clean something up!!) He also has to have his nose catorized to stop all the bleeding. All these things together, which we are going to do all at once will cost(even with insurance) I'm sure a good deal. Why even talk about this? Well, my pots help pay for all these extra's in our lives and now that I feel like I need to spend more time thinking and less making, where does this leave the bill for his surgery? Its always a balancing act when you have so many others depending on you. The artist part of me really struggles with this when I listening to those that don't have these sort of concerns.
The "others depending on you" is yet another topic for another day......jen

6 comments:

JUDI TAVILL said...

Ok, again... i have to comment...i know... it's annoying... but 1st of all julia and the meaning of pottery life is exactly what i need... but the strains of being a mom and an(frankly any kind of) artist is truly tough... i remember in college living for and desiring to be doig the kind of work that wuld make me so focussed that other stuff didn't matter(because the other stuff didn't matter back then) I had moments of it...I was getting a BFA and majoring in Fashion Design.... Pottery/Ceramics is different for me... now that I CAN lose myself in the process... it's just not an option with the boys and being the wife of(... THIS IS IMPORTANT FOR YOU based on the last entry)an ENT surgeon.... yes... my husband does tubes, adnoids and tonsils all day long.... which in alot of ways makes me very lucky... but we'll get to that in a minute... he only does it when it it is necessary... Quaid(with out any real info) sounds like he could benefit from the work being done... having been with my husband through residency, fellowship and private practice... basically... I can diagnose this stuff(ha ha.... but i do screen his calls acurately!!!) and if you have a GOOD DOC( make sure it's a good one- fellowship trained in pediatric otolaryngology if possible- that means a surgical residency and then additional year to 2 years after in pediatric ENT- and tell me where he/she did the program....)This should probably be a private email... but... I'm pretty sure no one's paying attention to me... and feel free to email me for any additional advice... If done properly and well... this operation could actually improve your son's life (and yours) fairly dramtically...helps with speech, breathing, hearing... if he really needs it... it's the right thing to do... I wish I could hook you up but we're in New Jersey... not worth the hike....who's the Doc? My husband tends to know of alot of them (as do I at this point...)
But that does not help me in my ceramic work...The continual struggle of the artist craving the process and the work will always be a blessing and a curse to me BUT...I guess I wouldn't have it any other way.... Help????

Ron said...

Hey Jen, I am wondering what your career goal are or if they changed after talking to J? Do you see yourself making more refined, time consuming, and therefore more expensive pots? I had a little lunch date with Amy a while back and we sort of talked about this so I figured you two really got more food for thought after the workshop. I see Julia's work as being in a functional vein but nothing I'd use on a regular basis. Does she make cups and bowls that you'd put in front of your kids? What are her goals and marketing stratigies? I guess teaching takes up a lot of her time and also gives her some freedom to try things that a full time potter who is trying to support one's self(or family) solely off the pots could not. Of course I have my motives for asking these questions, as I am thinking about my pottery future all the time. I'd like to get more folks coming to me to buy pots. I'd like to keep it really functional, bare bones, interesting, and affordable. I don't really want to teach full time. I never see my pots showing up in the Garth Clark gallery or in some SOFA show. Anyhow I guess I am asking because for the most part I see most of my peers and up and coming potters going more of the 'gallery route' very individual pots, higher price, and not very accessible to most people. I feel like this is a loss to the public who aren't getting pots into their homes to use and enjoy at the dinner table. Maybe this is an exaggeration or am I blinded in some way. Does it have to do with money, fame, artistic freedom, ego, or just wanting to push the ceramic enevlope? I certainly think I saw more of that work at ACC this year. I wonder that the university system is not producing any 'real potters' anymore. Boy, have I gotten off on a roll this morning. I was on the phone with Clary Illian yesterday and she was saying she sold out at her homesale in Nov. This morning I was journalling about how I think she works and how she is successful. She is one potter who I see being very creative, making utilitarian pots, at (very) affordable prices, who has maintained a following and has lots of integrity. Anyhow, I think I've veered from my point so I'm gonna shut up. I hope all the stuff with Quaid gets worked out. See ya in a couple weeks. Best, Ron

amy e said...

There is some excellent reading out there that appeared in Studio Potter a few years ago. It is some banter about functional pots and there place in post-modern art. It started with an article that Garth Clark wrote about Warren MacKenzie students and the damage that movement has put on functional pottery and went on with rebutals from Clary Illian. It was all very interesting and hit on what Ron was saying. It I can find my copies, I'll send them to you. As for Quaid, I feel for the boy. My nephew Jay is now 17 and they just figured out this problem. He spent his Christmas recovering from surgery. I geuss better late than never. A.E.

Jen Mecca said...

Judi,
So thankful for you insight. I will get you the name of the doctor just in case you may now him. We do think the surgery is a good thing for him. He also has a lisp and I think some of this is due to his hearing. When are you doing Julia's workshop again?

Jen Mecca said...

Ron,
You need to come have coffee or lunch with me one day and we can talk about all this. My fingers would fall off writing everything down. And yes, AMy and I did talk alot about all this stuff and I would love to talk pots and career( as you know, i always do). What are you doing next week? jen

Ron said...

Jen, We do need to get together. I have to come into Charlotte to teach on Tues. What do you have in mind? I am fairly flexible next week.
Ron