Another Day on the Ranch

With November quickly approaching, and the amount of work piling up, Ranch work has seemed to reach an all-time high. Ted and Sheryl DeVault have opened their studio up to several ceramic artists across the country to come and fire the Reitzagama around Thanksgiving. Some are traveling more than 2,500 miles to be a part of this great event. 

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 Dexter Woods sawing the logs

Dexter Woods sawing the logs

The crew that are invited to fire the work were picked from the final firing of the Reitzagama in January 2014 with Don. Some of the artists participating include, Chris Gustin, Matt Long, Mat Rude, Heidi Kreitchet, Preston and Sara Tolbert and several more! I can't wait to be sitting around the kiln sharing old stories of the Ranch and creating new memories, too. 

The Reitzagama calls for 10 cords of wood for the week-long firing. We plan to use whatever wood we have available during the firing, but it's shaping up to be pine and oak with maybe a pinch of aspen. Layering these woods will produce different effects on the wares in the kiln. From un-glazed to fully glazed, the work is sure to be one-of-a-kind due to the atmosphere in the kiln.

 Woodpile waiting to be split

Woodpile waiting to be split

As I mentioned, the work on the Ranch never stops. We had 9 cords of pine delivered to the Ranch this week and not only was the quantity of wood being delivered unusual, the wood for the first time (to my knowledge) was delivered in whole trees. The tough job of cutting, splitting and stacking began yesterday in preparation for more deliveries of wood and ultimately the beginning of the firing on November 18.

It's times like these where I wish we had a crew of 20 helping split, stack, and move the wood. It really makes you appreciate the fact that we have a log splitter, chainsaws and modern conveniences. If we had to cut all of it by hand, I'm not sure I would be as into woodfire. 

The work will continue to pile up until the firing begins, but once the kiln has been loaded and, bricked up, a large weight will be lifted and the celebration of the firing can begin.


Crews will begin to arrive in a few weeks and I'm really looking forward to seeing what everyone brings. In the meantime, I'm demoing my work for Northland Pioneer College on Monday October, 30. I've decided to update my store page with a few items I'll be demonstrating from 4-8 PM. Please feel free to stop by. The event is free and open to the public.

 An old relic left behind at the Ranch

An old relic left behind at the Ranch