American Joe McCaffery Studio Ceramics Shallow Bowl

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American Joe McCaffery Studio Ceramics Shallow Bowl with crackle glaze and purposeful red dot near rim. 

Signed NLP and made at Narrowland Pottery, Wellfleet Massachusetts.

2 1/8" H., 10 5/8" Diameter.

Circa 1995.

Excellent, undamaged condition.

In a conversation by e-mail, Joe attached the following artist's statement, which was included in an exhibition, summer 2016:

Joe McCaffery
Narrow Land Pottery July 2016
In 1999, about ten years after I began making pottery in Wellfleet, I connected with Chris
Gustin and his large wood fired kiln. I was thriving in Wellfleet, making loads of pots and
selling out of my studio- gallery. Life was good but I was feeling the rigors of making pots over and over to pay the bills and satisfy the demand for the line of domestic ware that made me independent. The semi annual wood firing in South Dartmouth Massachusetts has become my relief from the solitude of my studio as well as an entrance to the larger ceramics world and an accomplished group of colleagues and friends. I am in Gustin’s debt and I thank him for the opportunity to be part of his crew for all of these years. Gary Marotta has shown a small selection of the best of my wood fired work for some years. This is his first formal showing of my pots.

I love pots. Beautiful profiles and good glazes fascinate me. When I started making pots in high school much of the predominate American studio pottery influence was shifting from Scandinavian to Asian and abstract expressionism. I’ve long been caught between the search for the proverbial perfect pot and the demand to bring something personal to the work. At its best the brutal process of firing my clean shapes with wood over many days brings an element of controlled chaos to the work. The pots that make the grade, with their runny glazes and slightly distorted shapes, are evidence of a process where the work has been completely given over to fire in anticipation of the unexpected. Much effort is given to the placement of work in Gustin’s kiln. Experience guides the loading and firing, but in the end fire has it’s way. It is the evidence of the wood fired process that gives this work character and pushes each piece toward the unique and personal.

Having my own studio and gallery has given me a faithful audience who appreciate my work but has limited my exposure out side of my neighborhood. Except for the occasional juried group exhibit I have not shown work, I have been content to make pots and display them in my own space. ...