Judith de Vries
The ceramic work of Judith de Vries is made out of French porcelain clay from Limoges, which she mixes with different colour pigments. The bottom parts of her vessels and bowls are often thrown on the wheel, while the top part is build up by slabs with complex decorative patterns. These patterns are made piece by piece with multiple strips of coloured clays. The colours go right through the piece or, when using a backing slab, the white from the background shows as very thin lines between the strokes of pattern in front. Likewise, colours from the front show like the thin veins of floral petal on the reverse of slab, that is, on the inside of the pot. This patterning always leads the eye from base to crown, so that you think you are witnessing one of those wonderful delayed shots of an opening flower from a nature program on television.
After several stages of scraping, refining and sand dusting, her pieces are fired in an electric kiln, first at 1000 C and after glazing the inside, they are fired a second time at 1200 C.
Once her vessels emerge from the kiln, she burnishes the outside with wet and dry paper to obtain a softly smooth surface. Working in her technique in porcelain requires great patience and endurance.