[Clayart] to re/cycle clay

robert hackert ndiaman at hotmail.com
Wed Jul 14 12:48:27 UTC 2021

Well said Mel. As usual, one man’s trash is another man’s gold. 
Rob Hackert

Sent from my iPhone

> On Jul 14, 2021, at 8:43 AM, mel jacobson <melpots at mail.com> wrote:
> Bonnie Hellman is a CPA, she could afford to hire a neighbor kid
> to clean her house, studio, garage and re/cycle clay. She does it
> herself. Her choice.
> Kathi and Mel have systems in place over years to re/cycle their scrap
> clay. We make it a part of our pottery.
> We re/cycled all our clay at Hopkins High. That was many thousands of pounds
> of clay a semester. Kids had all the clay they wanted. They helped re/cycle.
> I said many times....I had a limit on the number of pots a kid could make
> in a semester. That number was 100. Many kids hit that number.
> Last week I re/cycled near 500 lbs of clay in my Walker Pug mill. So, at a
> dollar a pound I made $500.  I could have put on a track suit, sneakers and
> run every day to Reeve, two miles away. I save those heart beats to make clay.
> I add so much stuff to my clay body I could care less if there was a small stone
> in the mix.  Hell, I find parts of a model T in my pug mill.
> The "voice" of my style, pottery over the years is..."CLAY". My clay body is unique.
> Michael has a commercial pottery in Montana. He is an engineer/perfectionist. I admire
> him as much as anyone on this list.  He has no time to re/cycle, and his clay has to
> be perfect. I agree with him. Do a simple time management study.  He would lose money
> re/cycling.
> I get all the clay I want from Kerry Brooks. As I have mentioned before covid she grossed
> about a million dollars a year, 40 employees, making pots and tiles. There is no time
> to re/cycle. They put scrap in bags, stack them up. That re/cycled clay does not make
> tiles. The loss would be huge.  And, pay an MFA kid 20 bucks an hour to recycle would be
> insane.  They throw twenty bags of clay in my car every time I visit her. I do not buy clay.
> ever.
> Think of her dumpster cost if she threw it out. My garbage guy would have a fit if the
> can was full of clay.
> During covid, Kevin Caufield made restaurant dishes. He also called customers that wanted sets
> of dishes and said, "now is the time".  He has made a few thousand pieces. worked alone. no time
> to re/cycle.  Just making glaze was daunting.  High end restaurants are now in line for his
> dishes. Newspaper articles are appearing..."The new trend, hand made dishes".  Potters around
> him did not make pots, they stopped production. He kicked it in the ass.
> Tom Wirt used to beg schools to take all his scrap.  "Whooo, we don't want icky clay, ours comes
> in clean bags".  (And it has to be pure white.) So, off to the dump.  Or, stuck in the drain.
> mel
> We all have choices, up to us.
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