May 18, 2007

Alfred University Trip, part two

I promised some pictures of the outdoor kilns at Alfred, so that's what I will show today. Since school was out and all the shows were finished and mostly put away, there was not a lot of activity in the kiln areas. But I bet during the busy semester, its very active with lots of fire and people and clay around.

I tried to take a pic here of the one long room with three large kilns in it. The room had a roof, but it was mostly outdoors. There were so many kilns, I can't remember if these were soda or salt, but they were quite large. The bricks stacked up around the kiln entrances would make up the doors when firing.

I love that this one said Welcome to Hell on it. Ah, college. I think all of the kilns had names, many were written right on the kiln.

Here is a nice shot inside a salt kiln, I believe. The walls are all crusty with salty goodness.

I love the way these kilns arch, its such a beautiful traditional form.

These were smaller soda and salt kilns.

This was a big wood fired kiln, double arched. The top is the two chambers and the bottom picture is where the wood goes. There was a huge stack of wood in the room as well. Beautiful kiln. It was a little scary because you had to climb up on this wire grid to load it and see inside, and I don't like heights, especially when it looks open below.

This is a Raku kiln and reduction chamber. The lid of the kiln was on a wire pulley type system to pull the lid open. There were several of these large reduction chambers filled with sawdust or newspaper. You could fit a large sculpture in these. In fact, one of the artists graduating with my brother had very large figural Raku work which was made here.


  1. This was really interesting. I just got a kiln that I haven't used yet, so to see these enormous outside kilns is really something. Makes me feel like I need to fire up my kiln right now!

  2. Yes, the size and quantity of these kilns was really humbling. My little baby kiln is so teeny compared to these!

    Fire that thing up! Are you doing glass or clay? It's really amazing to be in control of a kiln and to see the materials change by your hands.