A versatile artists’ medium
Polymer “clay” is a colorless modeling compound of polyvinyl chloride (“PVC”) and pigments. Pigment is added directly into the polymer; no painting is involved in these pieces. The degree of saturation of the pigment added determines whether the clay will appear opaque or translucent. Pieces made of polymer clay can be washed by hand in warm soapy water or left outdoors in any weather conditions. Over time, the intensity of the color of pieces left in direct sunlight may fade slightly depending on the type of pigment used.
ABOUT THE CRAFT
The technique used to create most of the pieces in the gallery is called “caning”. With this technique, a design formed from the polymer compound, runs the length of a log called a “cane”, similar in construction to a sushi roll in that every slice taken off the log is identical. This technique allows a design element to be repeated throughout a piece in various sizes without having to repaint it each time.
The plates, bowls, and vases are made by shaving off ultra – thin slices (between 2-3 mm in thickness) from a cane. These “slices of design” have been applied directly to the under/outer side of armatures of glass plates, bowls, vases or bottles. The slices of raw polymer stick to one another, forming a single sheet which, when baked at only 275 degrees for 45 minutes, forms a strong suction to the glass as it hardens into a solid. After the piece has cooled, the clay side of the piece is sanded by hand under water through 7 grits of sandpaper (80,150, 320, 500, 800, 1000, 1500) until smooth. The entire process from conditioning the clay and mixing the colors through designing, building and sanding requires roughly 50 hours per each piece.