Monday, March 26, 2012

Six Weeks and Counting

The year is 2004 and the Chair for Ceramic Showcase is Natalie Warrens and the OPA President is Anne Stecker.  2004 proved to be a year of loss for the OPA; longtime member Chris Gum past away and this beautiful remembrance appeared in the newsletter:

CHRIS GUM: 1952-2004

To our great sadness, we have lost our friend and fellow potter, Chris Gum. Chris has been an OPA member for 23 years. He has been on the board of both OPA and Showcase and has often been the voice of reason (sometimes to all of our chagrin) amidst chaos. Chris died in his home of unknown natural causes on June 29th. A Memorial Potluck was held at the home of Linda Owen and Craig Martell on July 18th.

Chris is survived by his father, Robert, and his sister, Karina, both of California. Just as importantly, he is survived by Patty Cirello and her children: Sally, Angie and Joseph of Corvallis, who from his college days together made him a part of their family. He is also survived by his good and close friend, Nancy Hart, who will perhaps miss him most of all.

Chris made beautiful pots, and for many years he dug his clay from local stream banks and collected local feldspars and other materials for his glazes. His work was very careful and methodical. Efficiency was never a concern for him, he would rather be true to his work and its process. Chris’s work was well known by potters and art appreciators alike, although Chris never wanted to be a famous person. Chris chose to move through this world quietly and modestly, doing his share of the work without demanding too much of the spotlight.

Chris had a passion for gardening. He probably felt that laundry sorting and truck washing were overrated, but he always took exquisite care of his plants. He was a good listener and never hesitated to express his opinions.

In recent years, Chris avoided attending OPA Meetings (why deal with petty bureaucracy?), but he almost always came to Portland to visit his friends (the most important part of this group) on the days we held our meetings and thus we could all spend time with him. He was a wonderful friend and his sudden death has affected the entire pottery community in Oregon. We will all miss him terribly. (thank you to Ellen Currans, who presided over the Memorial Service, and to Anne Stecker, both of whom provided some of these words)

And Best of Show 2004 is Ron Linn.  This is what Ron had to say about his process:

Best of Show 2004
Ron Linn
"Our lives are systematically constructed from repetitious moments both unique and mundane. In isolation they may seem remarkably unremarkable and easily dismissed. Tethered by time, they teach and transform, creating who we are and who we are becoming. This notion that our lives are bound by an underlying geometry, hidden patterns, and layered meanings, is a recent preoccupation that informs much more than just my work.

My process, in rhythm with these materials, creates artifacts whose intention is to emphasize and place into foreground the consequence of daily living, stand as metaphor of events planned-for and unsolicited. Drawn into this collaboration the objects become a secondary witness to all contributors, a testament, a reflection of their inspiration and existence."

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