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The evolution of raku at Florida High FSUS

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Our first raku kiln was an old electric kiln stripped of elements. A 5' circle cutting blade was used ... After bisque fire we are ready to glaze our tea bowls. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The evolution of raku at Florida High FSUS


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The evolution of raku at Florida High (FSUS)
Barbara Davis
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Our first raku kiln was an old electric kiln
stripped of elements.A 5 circle cutting blade
was used to make the hole in the wall for the
burner to introduce flames.We borrowed the
propane tank, burner, tongs, and leathers from
the FSU sculpture department.
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We used some buckets but also reduced some pieces
directly on the lawn.
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It takes a lot to set up, fire, and clean up. And
its Hot!
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Since we had to borrow half the equipment we only
did it once a year, all day long. It was a lot of
work but it was worth it!
  • Heres some early student raku ware.

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We wrote proposals for funding and contacted
ceramic companies to get our own raku equipment.
We wanted light, portable equipment so we could
do half day or whole day firings whenever we
wanted.
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We found the Brackers Good Earth Clays website
and contacted them about purchasing two complete
raku kiln kits so we could donate one to our
sister school in Mississippi.Brackers deducted
the cost of the kiln from the second kit!
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Amaco donated two boxes of assorted raku
glazesone for our school and one to donate to
our sister school in Mississippi. They also
donated dual sets of mens and womens leather
gloves and two pair of Kevlar high temperature
gloves. They shipped all of the products to us
for free. Their donation was valued at well over
300.
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The Brackers Raku kiln kit comes with a Red
Dragon weed burner to fire the kiln. The bricks
on top of the kiln are necessary on windy days!!
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The Brackers raku kiln kit also includes
softbricks, shelves and tongs. The high temp
gloves in the photo were donated by Amaco.
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More examples of student work.
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This shows our students helping to raku fire at
the Florida State University Arts Sciences Fair
held in March 2009. What we fired on this day
included tea bowls for Ms. Cooper-Guastellas
(Ms. Cee-Gees) 2nd grade class.
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Our advanced sculpture class taught the 2nd
graders how to make pinch pot tea bowls.
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The second graders had learned about the history
of Raku from our high school class. Then they
practiced making pinch pots with Play-Doh before
we came with the raku clay.
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Ms. Cee Gees class studied 3 brush strokes
Bamboo, bamboo leaf and Chrysanthemum.
Then they combined all 3 into new images, such as
the lion at the far right.
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Large mural sized paintings done by the second
graders.
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After bisque fire we are ready to glaze our tea
bowls.
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The 2nd graders used the ink brush strokes they
had learned to decorate the outside of their tea
bowls with the Amaco glazes.
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The next day the bowls were raku fired downtown
at the Arts Sciences Fair.
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Finally, Ms. Cee-Gees class met with Japanese
students from FSUs International Studies
program. They learned about the underlying
philosophies of the tea ceremony harmony,
respect, purity, and tranquility. They practiced
and prepared their room, and invited guests to
their own tea ceremony.
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Thanks to the Florida High PTSA, SAC committee,
Florida Learn Serve, Amaco, Brackers Good
Earth Clays, Donors Choose, Kids in Need, and
all the teachers and administrators I have worked
with who have encouraged collaboration across
grade levels and across state lines.
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