“Inspired by a new cobalt/ ultramarine marine blue crawl glaze at the Studio, I envisioned the herd of 7 ceramic blue mud horses using this glaze that looks like dried cracking mud. They appear both ancient and contemporary. I started by hand sculpting/ building each horse in my favorite red sculpture clay. This red clay fires to a beautiful rich chestnut color that reminds me of the color of my horse Tic Tac. The red of the clay is not evident under the layers of black underglaze and blue crawl glaze on the sculptures, however, it is an important element to me.”
“I created each horse in relationship to the other. Each unique in gesture and personality. Once the horse bodies are sculpted, hollowed and refined, I allow them air dry slowly. The herd was then fired in a kiln twice. First the sculptures are bisque fire to a lower temperature to convert the clay into a more durable and semi-vitrified porous stage to accept glaze. After glazing, the Herd of 7 were fired to Cone 5 around 2185 F Degrees / 1196 C Degrees. After successfully surviving the bisque and glaze firings, each Horse was mounted to a steel base inspired by museum artifact mounts. The design of the bases allows for the pieces to be configured close together and rearranged in different formations.”
Why 7? 7 is my favorite number. It is also a powerful number in numerology and cross-culturally.
Aesthetically there is a visual power to a group of seven individual sculptures coming together to create a singular piece. It becomes a community, or visually, an abstract formation…for me the herd of 7 horses form a landscape, flowing river or a mountain range.
Several people have commented that the Blue Mud Herd reminds them of this poem by Mary Oliver:
Franz Marc’s Blue Horses
by Mary Oliver
I step into the painting of the four blue horses.
I am not even surprised that I can do this.
One of the horses walks toward me.
His blue nose noses me lightly. I put my arm
over his blue mane, not holding on, just
He allows me my pleasure.
Franz Marc died a young man, shrapnel in his brain.
I would rather die than explain to the blue horses
what war is.
They would either faint in horror, or simply
find it impossible to believe.
I do not know how to thank you, Franz Marc.
Maybe our world will grow kinder eventually.
Maybe the desire to make something beautiful
is the piece of God that is inside each of us.
Now all four horses have come closer,
are bending their faces toward me
as if they have secrets to tell.
I don’t expect them to speak, and they don’t.
If being so beautiful isn’t enough, what
could they possibly say?
To inquire about Blue Mud Herd by Amy Laugesen or see more images of the work, click here, or contact Ann Korologos Gallery by calling (970) 927-9668 or emailing email@example.com.