Monthly Archives: August 2015

Shape and Balance Let Sculpture Turn at Sawtooth Wind Art

Copper wind art by Larry Pryor

Copper wind art by Larry Pryor stands outside Café Vino in Fort Collins.

Aspen trees, cattails, and ivy thrive year round in the outdoor gallery of Sawtooth Wind Art on the southwest edge of Fort Collins. Through sun, snow, rain, and hail, they hold their own, leaves and all. These, along with several contemporary sculptures, are the metalwork of owner Larry Pryor.

If you have dined at Café Vino in Fort Collins in the last four years, you have already seen some of Larry’s work in person. Inside, his copper ivy holds business cards of the building’s occupants within its leaves. Outside, two of his aspen trees and a willow glimmer in sunshine and spin in a breeze.

Not all of Larry’s creations responds to wind. But for those that do, the shape of the copper and the balance of weight around all sides determine how easily they turn with a breath of wind. Continue reading

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Crystalline Glaze on Porcelain: Signature Look of Pine Pottery

This month Handmade on the Front Range celebrates its first anniversary. In August of 2014, it launched with a four-part series on artisans who had participated in the Fort Collins Studio Tour earlier in the summer. The first of the series featured potter Susan Sternlieb, who showed me how she slumps ceramic bowls and platters. The last of the series featured Heather Bartmann and Cindy O’Neill, who introduced me to the potter’s wheel, along with Chris Wolff, a master of raku firing.

Crystal detail on pottery by Diana Begner

Diana Begner uses self-formulated crystalline glazes for a unique look on her Pine Pottery. This crystal is a small detail on a platter she displayed at Evergreen’s Summerfest.

Since last year’s studio tour, I’ve seen many displays of beautiful ceramics as I wander art festivals along the Front Range in search of intriguing handmade items and their creators. Always I’ve wondered what new information I might be able to share about the ceramic artists’ process. When I came to the Pine Pottery booth last month at Evergreen’s Summerfest, the possibilities became clear – crystal clear, I might say.

Crystals on porcelain or porcelain-like clay give Pine Pottery by Diana Begner its signature look. Glistening randomly on numerous pieces of functional ware, they reminded me of flowers or stars or ice on my window on a wintry morning.

How did Diana achieve that look? That was my first question — but that was just the beginning of what she would share with me at her studio two weeks later.

Crystalline glazes on functional ware by Diana Begner

Pottery of porcelain-like clay with crystalline glazes were on display at the Pine Pottery booth during Summerfest in Evergreen, Colorado.

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