Sunday, May 19, 2013

Chamorro Pottery - Attempt Two - Lime Impressed Plate

It has been a while since I've experimented with Chamorro pottery and it was actually making slingstones that got me interested. Truth be told, it wasn't just making slingstones that got me interested in pottery, it was also the lack of Chamorro potters. I asked some months ago and continue to ask, where is the next generation of Chamorro craftsmen and women? I probably wouldn't attempt to make my own pottery if I knew where I could just buy it.

If you go back to my November 18, 2012 posting of my second attempt at pottery, here is where I have raised the bar so-to-speak by producing a lime-impressed pottery piece.

I'm sticking with making plates for now because they're not difficult to make and don't take up a lot of time. I haven't worked out all the bugs with the impressions yet but I am quite pleased with the results so far.

With the extra clay I made a few sling stones and a number of pendants whose images were borrowed from cave drawings on Guam and Rota. I will keep a few and send the rest to my Che'lu Jose down at the Chamorro Village (The Che'lu Store).

Side note: We tried to get to Gadao's Cave last time we were home but was told that access to the caves was closed off to the public. The caves as I understand it belong to the people of Guam, but the access to the caves was through private property. If this is so, I hope the situation can be worked out. I would like to see some of these drawings in person before they are lost to the decay of time.

Attempt 3

Friday, May 17, 2013

Slings from Around the World - Russian Sling

The sling I made today was copied from another museum piece. Museum curators are not experts in every kind of exhibit, how could you be so there are not any details on the region or area in Russia or what materials were used but from the looks of it the pouch and finger loop are made of leather. The strings look to be made of twisted plant fiber and is fairly thin. Another feature of the Russian sling, at least from the few that I've seen is the release tab. For those who may not be familiar with the relase tab, the release tab is held between the fingers then let go upon release.

My reproduction sling is made from eight strands of twisted cotton with a leather finger loop and a tear drop shaped release tab. I have modified the pouch a little by adding a bridge at the center of the split pouch design to keep the stone from accidentally releasing out of the bottom of the pouch during the wind up.
I drew the design out on heavy paper and have included it so that it can be copied. The release tab was made from a piece of material cut out from the center of the pouch.
EDIT: With a little feedback and research this style of sling is from the Tunguska / Siberian region of Russia. 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Sling Reporduction - Carolinas Islands - South Pacific Sling

In searching through museum photo archives available online I sometimes come across some unique slings and then try to reproduce them.


These slings are from the Carolinas Island region. The description of these slings were not very informative and only stated that the slings were made of 'vegetable' or 'palm' fiber.

I have woven this reproduction sling using Pandanus. My repoduction takes a lttle from each artifact.

EDIT: I wanted to give a better view of the construction on the pouch. there are six five-strand braids that make up the pouch.