[Clayart] aligning the platelets

Robert Harris robertgharris at gmail.com
Sun Jan 19 10:33:17 EST 2014

On Sun, Jan 19, 2014 at 8:50 AM, Vince Pitelka <vpitelka at dtccom.net> wrote:

> was raised by two scientists, and I'm all for scientific proof, but this
> is one of those situations where we don't really need scientific proof to
> know what is happening.

 I have to disagree with you slightly here Vince - in specifics rather than
in general.

We definitely know SOMETHING is happening. Without a doubt well coned clay
is easier to throw (or more specifically, that first, all important opening
up, is easier). BUT to immediately go from that to talking about platelets
aligning is complete conjecture. (We really don't "know" what is happening
as you put it).

In fact I have seen a number of ceramic scientists (who have take electron
micrographs) more or less say that within a plastic clay body (a mixture of
at least 4 different materials) the evidence for "platelets" existing at
all is rather slim (as potters might conceive them, of particles that can
be manipulated to line up). They are, more or less,  an invention of the
potter seeking to explain precisely what we are talking about.

I would like to pull some alternative hypothesis out of that place where
the sun don't shine, but I find myself unable to do even that (a water
dispersion thing maybe?). And certainly, other than for sheer intellectual
curiosity (which of course is a better reason than most!), it doesn't
actually matter, but to talk about anything being "proven" is certainly
jumping the gun!



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