I started this sometime last summer so I can’t include this head in my 20 heads project. The column was supposed to be the base for a birdbath I was doing for the Peralta Community Garden that was going to incorporate another artist’s work. About halfway through construction, I realized that the column was too clunky to match the more delicate figures in her artwork, and a birdbath, which has to be cleaned of debris regularly, was probably not a great idea for a community garden. I went ahead and finished it thinking I would add the birdbath to my not-yet-too-crowded-to walk-through-but-almost yard. It sat around the studio for a few months drying and trying not to be too much in the way.
The head started out as an idle moment with some soft paper clay coils. When I had built up to around her eyes, I thought she would be a fountain on top of the column with rivulets streaming down her face, but then I thought about raccoons and their water loving but destructive ways, and by the time I got to the forehead, her destiny had become being a planter.
The head was added to the corner of the studio with the column pieces while I mostly ignored it for months, but occasionally added underglazes and glazes. When I fired the head at cone 5 the orange underglaze was so predominant, I painted on a wash of green underglaze mixed with clear and fired it again, which subdued the orange enough that I could live with it.
But a planter needs a plant and what plant should she wear in her head? Most of the ones I have tried look ridiculous. This is my favorite of the ridiculous.
There is a little succulent with a bluish hue that might look good because it picks up the color on the base and it is low growing. I will plant some of it in the bowl under the head as well as the top, and put the whole thing on a bed of blue toned rock out in the grassy area. Hopefully, it will get completely finished sometime this summer. I think a year is long enough.