SAGGAR | 15 Images
Saggar refers to any structure which encloses a piece of pottery in a kiln for firing. There are many saggar firing processes. I prefer a process of hand-building with a groggy stoneware clay, allowing the finished form to slowly dry to a leatherhard state. The surface is then burnished with a smooth stone and a thin layer of terra sigillata is applied and the surface re-burnished. When the form is bone dry, it is bisque fired to 1915˚F (cone 05). Once bisqued, I paint ferric chloride on the surface and sprinkle soda ash on top which creates a chemical reaction — heat and gas, or chlorine gas. The vessel is then nestled in a foil sagger filled with combustible materials such as sawdust, organic materials, salts, or metals, and sealed. This foil saggar is then fired at 900˚F - 1300˚F for about 30 minutes and removed from the kiln to cool for about 30 minutes. Once removed from the saggar and fully cooled, the vessel is submerged in distilled water for 12 - 24 hours to temper any sodium that has migrated to the clay's surface during firing. The vessel, once dry, is finished with wax and hand buffed to a soft glow.
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