Edward and Deborah Bowen having 35
plus years ceramics experience moved to Bend, Oregon and began their Juniper
Hill Ceramics business in 2005. They use a variety of forming techniques to
create each piece of pottery. The potter’s wheel, slabroller and clay
extruder are all used to create the desired forms plus a myriad of
impressions to embellish the clay surface creating unique textures.
Along with Functional Stoneware, custom sinks and tile work the Bowen’s also
create Raku vases, lamps, plaques, decorative fish wall hangings, mosaics
and unique burnished pit wood fired vases.
High Fire Functional Stoneware: Each piece of pottery is hand-formed on a
potter’s wheel or hand-built. All of the glazes are unique and Non Toxic. The
pottery is fired to a temperature of over 2300 degrees which vitrifies the
clay into a very durable material called stoneware. It may be used in the
oven, microwave and dishwasher. However, please follow these few guidelines:
NEVER PLACE FROZEN FOOD IN STONEWARE, ALWAYS HAVE FOOD THAWED BEFORE
COOKING. NEVER PLACE STONEWARE ON A BURNER OR IN A PREHEATED OVEN.
Decorative Raku: “Raku literally means happiness!” Raku pottery is made by
removing the pieces from the kiln at a high temperature of 1947 degrees and
placing on sawdust to combust then enclosing the flame to smolder and then
cool slowly or rapidly by dosing in water. Like any piece of art, Raku
should be handled with care. The metallic luster may fade over time and
should not be placed in direct sunlight. Clean only with a soft cloth and
water. Raku should not be used to hold liquids or food.
Pit Wood Firing: Each piece is hand-formed on a potter’s wheel or hand-built.
Once the piece is dried to a “leather hard” state it is burnished; which is
a process of rubbing the clay with a smoothing tool (preferably a polished
stone) over the entire piece several times. It is then fired to bisque which
brings the clay to a semi-hard state. Pieces are placed in a pit on a bed of
sawdust with a layering of combustibles such as seaweed, banana peels and
animal dung also surrounded by twigs and wood creating a lattice support for
the heavier pieces of wood on top. The wood is ignited and left to burn
completely out, this takes appx. 24 hours. While the clay is being heated as
the combustibles burn around it, it absorbs these materials and traps the
carbon on the surface of the burnished forms creating a rich array of warm
oranges, beiges, brick and burgundy colors and a dramatic contrasting black
where the piece rested in the bed of sawdust. Once cooled the pieces are
then cleaned and warmed in the oven at 170 degrees to be polished with clear
shoe wax. This is a process which can be repeated after a time when the
piece has dried out and is no longer as shiny. At this point you can really
appreciate the individuality of each flame painted piece of art!