The Jane Hartsook Gallery is pleased to present new work by Naomi Dalglish and Michael Hunt of Bandana Pottery. Dalglish and Hunt are uniquely involved in their artistic process and that deep connection is evident in the lively character of their wood-fired utilitarian pottery. Their work is raw and yet refined, similar to buncheong ware but more gestural than those 14th century ceramics. That white-slip-decorated ware was prized for its wit and candor — qualities Dalglish and Hunt’s work shares — but where the decoration on the Korean ware is detailed, Dalglish and Hunt’s is free form. They carve, brush and run their fingers through the slip on their vessels, creating pottery with a presence to match its predecessors but with a contemporary aesthetic. Dalglish and Hunt’s work is remarkable for its enigmatic quality, which gives the user the impression that the soul of the clay is revealed in each one of these handcrafted vessels.
Dalglish and Hunt are able to bring their warm, charismatic ceramics to life because of their dedication to their making process. They source their clay from local deposits in North Carolina. Processing the raw clay is labor intensive and the artists spend days screening, mixing and drying it before they can use it. They form their vessels: carving trays from solid blocks of clay, slumping plates over plaster molds or paddling wheel-thrown cylinders into rectangular vessels. Dalglish and Hunt wood-fire their work in a kiln they built in 2003. It is modified from a Thai kiln design that mimics the shape of a flame. In order for the kiln to reach the desired 2350 degrees Fahrenheit, they stoke the chamber with wood for up to 16 hours – a demanding task that requires precision, timing and attentiveness. This commitment to their work is what enables Dalglish and Hunt to create utilitarian ware that is as lively as it is functional.
Naomi Dalglish and Michael Hunt live and work in the mountains of western North Carolina where they collectively operate Bandana Pottery. They both studied ceramics at Penland School of Craft in Penland, NC. Dalglish received her BA from Earlham College in Richmond, IN and has studied with potters in Tlayacapan, Mexico. Hunt’s education includes the comprehensive research of traditional kilns and potteries in South East Asia including an apprenticeship with Onggi potter Oh Hyang Jong in Kwangju, Korea. Dalglish and Hunt have built wood kilns in North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Virginia and taught workshops at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts (Deer Isle, ME); the Craft Guild (Dallas, TX); and the North Carolina International Woodfire Conference (Star, NC). Dalglish and Hunt exhibit their work widely, including at the Korean Cultural Center (Washington, DC); Northern Clay Center (Minneapolis, MN); Schaller Gallery (St. Joseph, MI); Wayne Center for the Arts (Wooster, OH); The Clay Studio (Philadelphia, PA); Southwestern University (Georgetown, TX); Red Lodge Clay Center (Red Lodge, MT); and AKAR Design Gallery, (Iowa City, IA).