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13. August, 2010 / Idun

Spheres

I have been twisting my mind on what to do with my spheres, or rather how to build them. The problem is that, unlike the other forms, the sphere is far less stable. Building in a vertical line is far less challenging because the forces in the structure only goes one way: down. The gravitational pull, and the weight of the other layers only press downwards, and as long as the walls themselves are fairly straight, they can hold the weight easily. In the sphere this is not the case. Since it is round (as spheres usually are) the walls and forces are not lined up, and it can more easily collapse if not strong enough to support its own weight. This becomes more of an issue the bigger the sphere becomes.

What I think will solve the problem of building is to build in a way where the sphere has more support in thicker parts, while still retaining patches of wafer thin clay to allow light flow. I started making the walls generally thicker, and pinching thin finger marks. I would work in a layered manner as in the other forms. The light flow was, however, rather limited, and I looked into another way of building.

By using smaller thin patches like in the images below, a grid of thicker walls is created by the overlapping clay, hopefully giving enough support during the firing process. The technique also more closely resembles the other forms, uniting them. I definitely prefer the upper part of the sphere where the patches have turned more square. The round patches in the bottom part really reminds me more of a pinecone. In my opinion, the square patches give a sense of system and order.

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