Monday, August 9, 2010


Dear Hanna August 10, 2010
Gangjin, Republic of Korea
I sit here not knowing if I should be worried or fascinated. Apparently, we are told that a Typhoon by the name of Dianmu is baring down on Korea and will make landfall only a few kilometers from here. In any case the weather looks very grey outside and rain and wind are imminent.
I am excited about my time here so far although yesterday I was a bit homesick, I think it was the fact that I hadn’t slept in days and the heat was wearing on me. Yesterday we visited the scarecrow army monument. In the 1500’s a Korean general assembled a volunteer army to thwart an attack by the Japanese. Those volunteers created thousands of scare crows and put them along the coast. When the Japanese arrived the saw what they thought was a very large army of warriors and they retreated. The monument is incredible.
Were visited by two artists as well. Cho Jan Ho, who is a ceramic sculptor interested in the thought of Korean identity. His work is spontaneous and conceptual. His traditional forms, such as bowls, are glazed in an untraditional manner, which is considered somewhat controversial. He used some pretty interesting tools, including rice cake paddles. Lee Hok Su is a traditional Ongi artist. He spent the afternoon putting together a 4 ft Onji jar and explained the whole soy sauce terraces in homes. Each family may have up to 30 of these jars. He makes about 8 of these a day, they take a few days to dry, then they are glazed and set to dry again but this time for 3 months before being fired.
After this we had a very traditional dinner celebration, which consisted of 100 plates. It was fascinating to say the least with many different types of sashimi, including beef, as well as dried fish, crabs, kimchi, bbq, miso, rice and tea. There were several things I tried that were very interesting and I am not quite sure what they were. The souju continued to be poured..
On another note I have been asked to consider leaving my work to be part of the permanent collection of the Gangjin Porcelain Museum’s permanent contemporary ceramics collection. I know this is a big honor, but truthfully I am on the fence about this. I have another few hours to decide.
I have to give a demonstration today. Lets hope it goes well.
I hope you are dealing with the new round of chemo. Please know that my heart is with you. More later. XOXO

PS, I will post the picutures later.

No comments: