Ted Fons: "My vessels are created in the organic forms found in southwestern Native American pottery, glazed with copper matte, and fired to a crystalline finish. Attaining the dramatic colors on the vessels involves multiple steps. After each piece is thrown, trimmed, and bisque-fired, it is both sprayed with glaze and fired three times in my electric kiln before it is ready for the final color firing. One vessel is thus fired a minimum of five times. In the final color firing, the piece is brought to temperature in an outdoor propane kiln, then removed from the kiln and placed in a reduction chamber containing wood, sawdust, straw, alcohol and/or other combustibles which I arrange for specific effects. The chamber is then sealed and the vessel is left to cool until it can be removed with bare hands. The 'final' firing is often done several times until either I obtain the results I desire or the piece destructs".
ENJOYMENT & CARE OF EXCALIBUR RAKU POTTERY These works of art are non-functional pieces meant for display and visual enjoyment. Raku clay is porous and should not be expected to hold water. Since most of the colors are caused by the presence of a small amount of copper oxide in a glaze composed of primarily copper metal, there is a possibility that, in time, the copper metal may oxidize and the colors of the vessel may change. Exposing the piece to full sunlight could accelerate the process. However, I have had pieces both in windows exposed to full sun and in well-lit rooms for eighteen years and have not seen any surface changes. Due to the sensitivity of the copper-based glaze and the residual carbon on the surface, the pots should be handled only by the inside rims and the bases in order to preserve the colors. The salty moisture on the hands will etch finger prints into the glaze surface. The attractive velvet-red finish is especially delicate and should not be touched, because this finish is by nature the most weakly-bonded to the vessel surface. A wool duster used lightly or air blown on the surface should be used to remove any dust. Basically, treat the surface as if it were a painting.
Awards and Exhibits:
All Colorado Art Show Award, Curtis Art Center , Greenwood Village , Colorado, 1998
Colorado Clay Show, Foothills Art Center, Golden, Colorado, Marsha Levy Memorial Award, 1998
Colorado Art Open Exhibition, Foothills, Art Center , Golden, Colorado, 1999
Invited Artist, Three-Person Show, Curtis Art Center , Greenwood Village , Colorado, 1999
All Colorado Art Show Award, Curtis Art Center , Greenwood Village , Colorado, 2000
Fons & Fons Oil Pastels /Raku Vessels, Lapis Gallery, Denver , Colorado, 2004