Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Cup that Holds your Wine

Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven? - Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet

I admit I'm not much of a wine drinker. I like Pinot Grigio, Reisling, and White Zinfandel alright: having come of age in the 80s, when wine coolers were the drink of choice for party girls like me, sweetness is a plus. Helps if it's pink, too. Ah, how fondly I remember the days of Matilda Bay wine coolers! I was known as Two-liter Lori then. Two drinks makes me tiddly now, and I'll have a hangover to look forward to, in the bargain; not to mention that all my rowdy friends have settled down.

But I digress.

Where I was going was, I've never "gotten" wine stems. As a person who designs drinking vessels for a (so-called) living, a container so fragile, spindly, and unstable seems a poor choice for one devoted to the consumption of alcohol. Maybe it's a sort of self-regulating mechanism? If you knock over your glass, you're cut off. If so it doesn't work very well. The quote above reminds us that ceramic wine cups were and are the choice for much of the vino consumption in human history. Kahlil Gibran was speaking of the inseparability of joy and sorrow, a thing which makes sense to me: the random factor that I deliberately introduce into my work, which gives me relatively high firing losses, makes all the sweeter those pots that survive to serve beautifully in the world.

After reading this quote I was inspired to make some wine cups. I kept the basic shape of the bowls, which will hold about 6 ounces after shinkage. I like the smooth curves and the way the bellies will snug into your palm. I may even be inspired to take one for a test drive, when they are finished.
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