Tuesday, April 23, 2013

T is for TAD CRISP AND HIS WONDERFUL POTTERY

Art should transcend the ordinary and cause the user to experience and contemplate beauty in creation as it is used. 


Hello everyone,

Today, I'm honored to introduce you to my wonderful, talented, potter extraordinaire, big brother, Tad Crisp. He is the best brother I could ever ask for and I’m so very proud of him. 
Tad, thanks so much for being here. I know everyone is going to want to know all about you, so I’m going to hush up and let them see what an amazing, talented man you are. Can you please tell us a little about yourself?


 Tad…


I began making pots in high school craft class back in 1969-70 and continued my love of clay through college where it lured me away from intended majors in biology and anthropology to fine arts. In 1977, I graduated from Corpus Christi State University (now Texas A&M of Corpus Christi, Texas) with a Bachelor of Studio Arts, and an emphasis (almost 30 semester hours) in Ceramics/Pottery. Immediately following graduation (in December of 1977), I joined the Navy.

In the Navy, pottery just was not a possibility, so I diverted my creative attentions toward developing graphic design, illustration and calligraphy skills. There is no direct route to becoming a Navy Artist ­(Illustrator/Draftsman), but after spending  six years in the Navy (five of them at sea), I was able to become an Illustrator/Draftsman, and served four years in that vocation.


Upon receiving a honorable discharge from the Navy in 1988, I went to work in the graphic design field where I have worked for the last nineteen years. After being away from my love of clay for twenty-five years, I settled into my beautiful, Tennessee backwoods, and built a pottery studio. It has not been easy getting back on the proverbial bicycle, but I’m back in the swing of things, and hope to make pottery a major part of my productive life from this point forward.


Why Pottery?



Pottery is as old as civilization itself. In Genesis 2:7, the Scriptures say that the Lord God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and he became a living being. So, according to the Scriptures, God made us out of the dust of the earth, and we have been trying make stuff out of the same clay ever since. Clay is simply dirt. It is made up primarily of Alumina and Silica, along with a number of other minerals that contribute to color and density. The art of ceramics is really just making art out of the dust of the ground. 



Pottery, unlike most art forms produced today, defies the urgent nature of our society. Clay requires time to form, time to dry, and must be worked at key times during this drying process. There are things that may be done to speed up some of these processes, but from start to finish, the average pot takes two to three weeks from start to firing (and much longer for larger pieces). This allows numerous reflections on both design and purpose as the piece matures toward completion.


Art should transcend the ordinary and cause the user to experience and contemplate beauty in creation as it is used. A well-designed and well-made teapot, for example, is not merely a vessel for dispensing steeped beverages. Instead, while it is fully capable of dispensing these beverages, it is also capable of drawing the user into an aesthetic experience, and enhancing the joy of simply having tea. 



Stoneware and porcelain pottery is very functional. It is dishwasher safe, microwave safe (though the high iron clay bodies may heat up a bit when microwave), oven safe and in some cultures is even used on top of the stove (though this is not recommended). 


The purpose of art pottery is to bring truth and beauty to everyday life. Art has not always been sophisticated and separated from life, detached for a special appreciation. In the beginning, art was merely an aesthetic treatment of things used in everyday life. Art ought to have both a physical and a spiritual or “soulish” component.




Not long ago in our history, just about anything one used in life was handmade from clay, wood, leather or metal. We have become so advanced in our culture that we have gotten away from some of these simpler handmade forms.

Ceramics is terribly incompatible with our modern “instant gratification” culture. Wet clay is formed into pots and ­allowed to dry for a couple of weeks, then it is fired once in what is called a bisque firing. Once the clay has been changed from clay to ceramic, it is no longer fragile and cannot be dissolved or recycled back into the bucket and used again. At this point, it is glazed and fired again. This can take a week (or however long it takes to fill the kiln). So, for instance, ­if you want to order a coffee cup, it can take at least three weeks until you see it, more than likely a month.


Pottery is “touchable art.” It is something that rewards the participant for making time in his/her day to spend with it. 




It is Tad’s hope that the Golden Hollow Pottery may contribute to the experience of beauty in the lives of his customers as they live in our increasingly chaotic culture.

Enjoy the variations of design and beauty!








For more information about Tad or to contact him for an order, you can reach him here:


Email: tad@goldenhollowpottery.com

Tad, thanks again for being here today. To my blog buddies, please take a minute to tell me about your talented family or just drop a comment to say hi. I love hearing from you.

((Hugs to all))
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed
Release date 29 April 2013
Pre-order on Amazon



1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pots. I feel so priveleged to be part of such an amazingly talented family! Love you guys!!!
Mary