The earthy scent of fresh clay

The earthy scent of fresh clay

Georg krosch shapes the jug on his turntable with his bare hands. At this moment he is completely at peace with himself and his work. When the potter from burgkunstadt takes on a shape, a plate, a cup or the willi mug, he turns series of 20 to 30 pieces. They are all recognizably related, and yet each part is individual. "The tracing of the form with my hands, seeing how the tone changes when I turn it, still touches me every time, even after 40 years.", says krosch.

As the tone changes, so has krosch over the years. "My forms have become simpler", he describes his development. That’s because he concentrates on the essentials. And that is due to the feedback from the customers for whom he is shooting. You got him to topfern a cup in the shape of the willi glass. This is the classic beer glass, a simple cylinder with a slight belly that has slid up a bit. Krosch’s willi mug has become a bestseller for him in a short time.

Also oven tiles self potted

"I listen carefully to what is important to people", krosch tells. Because for him, the best thing is when his dishes are also used. Preferably every day. If the parts, which he formed with his hands, are still in good hands.

Of course, this is also the case in his living room. The cups are self-potted, the cake pans self-potted – the tiles of his oven self-potted. He learned that from a stove maker in kolbermoor, who mainly made tiles.

"I always wanted to go to the plate and make dishes", he says. And his master has made it possible for him. "Pottery from old bavaria" is the title of the book that fascinated him at the time and that still sits on his shelf today. Once a week, on thursdays, the apprentice and the master had agreed, he was allowed to turn the wheel. And krosch has first of all copied the forms from the book. Hundreds of models have become a few dozen over the years, and often quite decorated shapes have become simpler and simpler.

It’s the clay that counts

Krosch has also adapted the material for his shapes and ideas. If the clay powder is fine, then the clay has a high plasticity, which is important when turning. If it is coarser, the clay gets more structure. Small iron oxide nodules and feldspar stuccos are characteristic of krosch’s clay: "they produce the small dark dots during firing."

Pottery does not seem to fit into the time, because it takes a lot of time. In the cellar of his house on burgkunstadt’s market square is an old kneading machine from a bakery. So krosch prepares his material. Just as a yeast dough must rest, the clay must also rest until it can be further processed. Wet and covered with foil, this takes several months. Then krosch turns his cups and plates from it. He takes a week to do this.

Two firings are necessary

The freshly potted dishes first have to dry – and that takes another week or two. Then comes the first firing, the bisque firing, and again the pieces rest until they are glazed and fired a second time. Only then is the product that krosch sells finished. Only then does he see whether the material has thrown any unwanted bubbles. Only then does he see which parts are cracked or chipped. "Out of 100 pieces, one or two are always rubbed – and these are often exactly the ones that are made to customer specifications." Krosch laughs. All the potters he has met at markets in the region know this. When two pieces are ordered, krosch turns five and hopes they come out of the oven in one piece.

The weeks in which krosch fires are therefore always a special time. A time of uncertainty, of waiting – but also a time when he is there for his dishes day and night. The first firing takes 50 hours. Krosch has to check regularly that the temperature and air supply are correct. He has chosen a kiln that is operated with gas. An electric oven was programmable. "Then all the parts looked the same", says krosch. And he does not want that. He has different climate zones in the kiln: places where there is more or less oxygen in the air. Each cup has its light and dark sides. Krosch turns a willi cup in his hand: "the darker side was closer to the flame."

Heat rises for 25 hours

Weeks later, when the glaze is applied, it becomes even lighter. In order for the feldspar to melt and the glaze to become smooth and also spool-proof, a temperature of over 1200 degrees must be reached. If the material has already been fired and is firmer, krosch can then heat it up more quickly: for 25 hours, the heat in the oven rises continuously. Krosch checks through small peepholes in the kiln how hot it is. Like tiger’s corner teeth, female pins stand behind it. Up to 1200 degrees they stand vertically, unchanged, then they become soft and begin to melt – like a candle that has been left on the tiled stove. Then krosch knows he can stop the heat supply and let the oven cool down very slowly.

People have been potting for 5000 years. Georg krosch is enthusiastic about the material: "with clay i have an infinite number of possibilities." The material appeals to all his senses.

Jan bohmermann: “headwind is my middle name”
Before jan bohmermann (39) reappears, he first goes underground. In the past few days, the satirist’s social media channels on twitter, instagram and…

With carstens through field and meadow, with mollemann to the rustication company
Alfons hollet had reckoned with everything when he tried to recruit for the federal border guard (BGS) at the district recruiting office – except having…

Kerber without pressure – start in brisbane
The 24-year-old tries to brush aside the fact that after her great results last year and her leap to fifth place in the world rankings she will be the…

Breakfast: rather a lukewarm affair
That was a rather modest pre-spring weekend, at least outside the iphof gourmet fair. There were still no signs of a new springtime atmosphere. At least,…

Rate article
Add a comment