For a few weeks, I have been attending pottery classes at Fireworks Studios, in Glasgow. It’s been a lovely experience, we’re a really concentrated crew so there is little talk as we each work on our throwing. It’s very difficult but also very satisfying, and like with learning any new skill, it kind of whacks you in front of yourself and your fears and desires. I personally get immensely frustrated and impatient, and then berate myself for being too demanding and not knowing how to enjoy things…. So as well as learning pottery, I am trying to learn to calm down and take things slow.
I am writing about this on here because I am amazed at how no single piece of clay is wasted. All the clay gets re-used. The wet clay, the dry clay, it all gets put back in adequate places where it can get wet again or stay wet… And then kept there until it’s needed again.
Notwithstanding this element of the class, it also makes me reflect on the idea of adding more objects to the world, and on the objects I own. How to love them, how to preserve them, why I love them, do I love them? I would love to live in a place where everything I own is loved, because of aesthetics or function or memory. I’m still young and moving about, so I have a lot of IKEA crockery and bedsheets, but eventually when these need replacing I would love to start investing in beautiful objects that will last. I have a wish list of pottery and jewellery items I like, which I keep looking at every so often in case, you know, my salivary glands need exercising.
Also if you like pottery check these Instagram accounts out (UK potters only so far):
Glasgow based Mariella Verkerk
Glasgow based Jono Smart
Berkshire based Luke Eastop
London based Tom Kemp
London based Elliott Ceramics
On Friday, I went to pick up my first veg box from Locavore. Veg boxes are seasonal produce grown from Locavore’s farms, as well as other local organic farms. Each week I will pay £5 and will receive something different.
I have been researching farmers markets in Glasgow for a while, but couldn’t find anything conclusive or satisfactory. Since I live close to Locavore, I decided to trust fate and subscribe to a veg box.
This means that I don’t get to choose what I am given; I simply have to make do with what I receive. This pleases me, as it will enable me to discover new vegetables, think up new recipes, and explore my culinar-adventurous side. Certainly in a few weeks, when my work load will have cranked up, I will be damning the kohlrabi or cabbage I’ll receive. But for now, I plan to have a great week of fun dinners.
And obviously, I like knowing my food doesn’t have any air miles; that I am supporting local farmers; that setting up a direct debit means I don’t produce receipts; that I can bring the plastic bag back next time; that I walk to Locavore and back…
This week, I received potatoes, carrots, a cabbage, onions, and sprouting broccoli.
Perhaps a little off-topic, but here’s a video (in French only – hopefully the English-speaking world will make a translated one soon) about what’s happening with about 3000 advert boards in Geneva’s streets.
Let us not forget
- the role adverts play in encouraging a consumerist society.
- how much trash is generated by the advertisement industry
“We are used to seeing extremely simple messages that impose a life model with a big car, a big salary… So this is both a critique of commercial advertisements and a proposition of reinvesting into the public space, in dialogue with its citizens.”
Some of the messages on the boards:
“Less (images of a tank) in 2017 and more (images of a smiling person and someone on a bike)”
“More ❤ for the Earth”
“When publicity isn’t here, the brain danses”
“We feel better without mental/visual pollution!”
“Mirror, mirror, tell me who has the most material goods!”