Jay Frankenfield's "Dragonfly Bowl" is our featured artwork for May 2009.
"I grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and finished college in Bozeman at Montana State University majoring in plant and soil science. I moved to the Upper Cumberland in 1979 with my partner, high school sweetheart and fabulous wife, Kitty. This is where we chose to raise our two wonderful children, both grown and married – my daughter Lindsay in Knoxville and my son Whitney in Nashville.
"I’ve always felt a creative spirit within. I was interested in art and music through my youth and influenced by all of my artistic relatives. My grandmother was a gifted oil painter; an aunt that lived in China was a painter; my father painted watercolors; and both an aunt and my mother threw ceramics with a wheel.
"In 1998, I was spending a lot of time as a scout leader and felt the need to share time with my daughter. Her interest was in art and a friend of mine told me about the workshops at the Appalachian Center for Crafts. This led us to an evening beginners’ class. I was hooked from the first time I sat at the potter’s wheel and I have been attending workshops every year since. Last year I began setting up a studio at home and I enjoy the ability to work on pieces as the mood strikes me and as time allows.
"The Dragonfly Bowl I created was planned in a rough fashion in my head. I wanted to throw a low, wide bowl that could hold and offer fruit, produce or whatever the person who possessed it wished. The use of dragonflies as a decoration comes from a love of nature and I will experiment with different types of surface decoration as the seasons change. Sometimes, as with this bowl, I have an idea in mind when I sit at the wheel, but often, the lump of clay will speak to me as I center it on the wheel and begin to shape it.
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