Ceramics are hard for me to appreciate, but I'm trying to learn. How to appreciate randomness, for example? Some of Sperry's transitional works were raku, I think: at any rate, they had that rough texture and almost random coloration that wood ash gives to Japanese pots. As you can tell from this blog, I tend to like order in art -- I think I might actually be still living in the Enlightenment period -- but here I started to see why the randomness matters.
Gerard Manley Hopkins knew about fires beneath the surface: the end of his wonderful sonnet on "The Windhover" -- a bird of prey, turning from calm soaring to a steep dive, like a coal in the fire suddenly falling open:
. . . and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,Or, in a more elegiac vein, Shakespeare, in his sonnet about growing old:
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire,(Interesting that in both poems, the verbs for these fires are "g" words: "gall," "gash," and "glow." Does anybody know what that might mean about language?)
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie. . .