Art students experience unique mobile raku workshop


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On Earth Day, while most participants were prepping their environmental booths, the art department was hard at work selling jewelry, painting faces, and they got the opportunity to experience a mobile studio and kiln called “Mobile Raku”.

Raku is a process in which ceramic pieces are “removed from the kiln at bright red heat and subjected to post-firing reduction by being placed in containers of combustible materials, which blackens raw clay and causes crazing in the glaze surface,” according to Brett Thomas’s website, the man who’s Mobile Raku made an appearance during this year’s Earth Day celebration.

“Raku is an ancient firing technique where you take the pottery out of the kiln at about 2800 degrees and put it into a container of combustibles, and they catch on fire. The reaction that occurs creates changes in the glazes,” according to art teacher Mrs. Kathryn Humphrey.

Mobile Raku is based out of Philadelphia and is scheduled for workshops all over the North East. Thomas started Mobile Raku after many students were so eager to fire their works of art, to the point where there was not enough class time or space to do so.

The PTSA funded this one-day workshop that happened to fall on Earth Day.  The 3-D and advanced 3-D design classes at North Harford participated in the workshop. Since it occurred on Earth Day and Ag Heritage Day, other students outside of the art department were able to experience this unique process, and see how exciting the process is.

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Art students experience unique mobile raku workshop