There is a really friendly atmosphere at Potfest, with a potters competition, where everyone's art piece is set out on the lawns so that the public can wander around the amazing entries and cast their vote. In the evening there is a meal with prizes for the best entries, a mug swap ensures a very liquid finale, bottles of beer and wine standing like little forests on every table. Given better weather there is a camp fire and a few more beers before the revellers crash out in their tents and vans, to nurse sore heads the next morning.
This years competition theme was 'Journeys and Pilgrimages' and most potters entered work. It takes me ages to think of something, but I have to plan well ahead to get it made, dried, glazed and fitted into my woodfiring schedule, so I only get one shot at it and opening the kiln is always a bit traumatic should things not quite work out. Additionally I had to find a big chunk of wood, carve and oil it to complete the piece, which could only be done after the work had been successfully fired. I finally settled upon making a 'Ditty Box'.
|CPO Albert Lawton's Ditty Box|
After Potfest it was home, dry the tent, refuel, pack more pots and set out a couple of days later for Oldenburg in Germany. Internationale Keramiktage Oldenburg 2012 is in it's 30th year and draws potters from all over Europe, I sent my application off more in hope than expectation and was delighted to be accepted.
The event is held in the town centre on the Schlossplatz right alongside the very impressive Schloss and Landesmuseum, the tents and market stalls resembling more of a festival than a traditional English market.
Our friend Tina offered us her 3 metre square gazebo that she uses to stand Farmers Market, where she sells her wonderful cakes and biscuits. Only problem is it is bright orange and after much debate and no other real options we took it with us.
|Errr! Ours is the orange one.....|
The weather was glorious and we baked under our orange shelter. Summer at last and a stop over in Gouda on the way back to Blighty and it's back to work.