This workshop was a special treat for me as I was asked to be Wally’s assistant throughout the workshop. We started a day early mixing the slips and glazes that the attendees would need. Wally is very particular about how everything is mixed and sieved and even how it’s all arranged for use by the people attending the workshop. It’s evident that he’s done many workshops and has learned from each one.
Wally is also very thorough in his teaching. He gave everyone very detailed handouts and then reviewed them to be certain everyone was clear on the content and how that pertained to their pots. After explaining the process of naked raku and how to think about the surface decoration it was time for everyone to try it. People spent a lot of time decorating pieces and trying the different options available to them via the naked raku process.
One thing that Wally did that I’ve never seen anyone do during a raku workshop was to teach inexperienced participants how to use the tongs and maneuver the pots (we used test pieces). I thought this was brilliant and now use it whenever I teach anyone how to raku.
The workshop was a complete success. Everyone got some very nice pieces, the loss was the least I’ve seen in any raku workshop, everyone learned, and (it seemed) everyone had a great time.
Wally Asselberghs hails from Belgium but frequently does workshops in the US, he is also the moderator of the “naked raku yahoo group” that is a great resource for anyone interested in learning more about naked raku. Of course I highly recommend a workshop with Wally also.
Written by Lori Buff, East Atlanta Village, Georgia, USA
(Owner of Future Relics Gallery) : www.futurerelicsgallery.com
Workshop Location : MudFire, Decatur, Atlanta area, Georgia, USA
Website : www.mudfire.com