I have always loved pitchers. To me, it is a challenging form that brings into focus one’s ability as both a designer and a craftsman. This piece by Michael Simon is one of my very favorites. I had been making a similar shape but when I found this pot on a visit to Michael’s studio in the early 1980’s, I quickly saw the deficiencies in what I had been making. Simon has a way of coaxing a form out of the clay without choking the life out of it. His approach is direct and highly personal, every surface revealing the gesture and nuance of the making process. This simply glazed salt fired piece gave me new insights into my own work and brought about a big change of direction for me.
I do not save many pieces of my own work. The ones I do put aside usually end up getting sold or donated when I am really low on inventory. I have kept this bowl because it represented a direction I was very keen on pursuing, yet never quite made the time for. I took this bowl home and it sits on a table in the living room full of paper, pencils, envelopes and loose change. But I look at it a lot and it has become a reminder to me to keep moving forward, pursuing new ideas, just like the little running guys on the pot.