Oh, close your eyes and you wake up / Face stuck to a vinyl settee / Oh, the line was starting to break up / What was that you were going to say? / 


concentric scraps

e. saffronia downing

1    The potter presses their tool into the spinning surface’s soft side

2    Walking

3    I watch the ground

4    Circles

5    A red plastic spoon

6    Hygroscopic earth on a hot afternoon

7    Spinning surface

8    Shallow furrows

9    I pick up shapes from the spring grass

10    Silicon rib

11    Steel scraper

12    Spinning surface

13    Shallow furrows

14    The tool against my stable palm

15    Anecdotal archaeology: “Tennessee Potteries, Pots, and Potters”

16    Embossed stamps encircle the outside

17    Pin pricks

18    Screwhead impressions

19    Spinning

20    I come upon a display of Decker Pottery tools, largely from Paul Fink’s collection

21    A stylised cobalt tulip brushed beneath a salt-glaze surface

22    Spinning furrows

23    Concentrically etched

24    Compressed clay platelets

25    One common practice: cut credit card into carving tool

26    Slippery surfaces

27    Made up of usual kitchenware: crocks, jugs, churns, canning jars

28    Bricks tumbled smooth in Lake Michigan

29    Pink plastic shard

30    Silica and alumina

31    Identical to the parent rock from which it came

32    Pulling clay upwards

33    Decker’s distinctive round lip

34    As rocks erode slowly

35    Decorated in Albany slip

36    I take pictures of clay in the park

37    Iron-heavy soil

38    Spinning surface

39    Carved scrap of wood

40    Shallow furrows

41    Searching for shapes in the spring grass

Images, above: Display of Charles F. Decker pottery wooden tools, largely from Paul Fink’s collection. Courtesy Southern Pottery. Photo: Beverly Burbage.
Below: E. Saffronia Downing, A Display of Downing Pottery Tool Materials (2021). Plastic, brick, metal, wood, photograph, polystyrene. Courtesy of the artist.

psst... page-based installations are best read in print!
︎ ︎ ©Plates 2021
︎ ︎ ©Plates 2021