• Upcoming trips

    September 7 to 15 Tony and Jo will visit us from the UK

    13-23 January, 2018 Cruise out of New York around the Caribbean on the Norwegian Gem

  • theatre and Concerrts

    July 1  Saw “Napoli, Brooklyn” by Meghan Kennedy at the Laura Pels Theatre. It is based upon a real-life disaster, the surprise staging of which, is mind shattering! However, the story line has a surfeit of themes added; religious brain-washing, the effect of a bullying husband and father and lesbian freedom. None of these is fully convincing in spite of the excellent acting of the cast.

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 50 other followers

  • Follow Thompson's Travels on WordPress.com

The Potter’s hand (detail)

I had been pleased with myself since I fired the clay of my “The Potter’s Hand” piece. Not that the work stood out in any way from that of the other students except that, what advantage they had in artistic sense, I made up for in superior engineering–a legacy of my woodworking days before apartment dwelling. The reference in the title is to Fitzgerald’s translation of Omar Khayyam. Here are the relevant verses:

And, strange to tell, among that Earthen Lot
Some could articulate, while others not :
And suddenly one more impatient cried—
‘ Who is the Potter, pray and who the Pot ?’

Then said another—‘Surely not in vain
“ My substance from the common Earth was ta’en,
‘That He who subtly wrought me into Shape
‘ Should stamp me back to common Earth again.’

None answer’d this ; but after Silence spake
A vessel of a more ungainly Make :
‘ They sneer at me for leaning all awry ;
‘What ! did the Hand then of the Potter shake ?’

Here are three views of the Hand (I used my own as a model) working on the rough clay without evident support:

However. My smugness disappeared the moment I first saw the incredible sculptures of Carl Milles in Sweden. He has engineered gravity-defying works beyond belief. Here is one of them in his sculpture garden in Stockholm: 




One Response

  1. Your work is simply breathtaking, Ben. In my book, you’re just as brilliant as Carl Milles! Much love to you and Ethel, as you prepare for your next adventure. Have a wonderful trip! Bonnie

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s