Anna Kats

Wood-fired porcelain

I am a ceramic artist based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I work in my home studio I share with my husband, Bradley Neu. In 2006, we salvaged brick from a shut-down steel refinery, and we built an Anagama style wood-fired kiln in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The land the kiln lives on is generously lent to us by Joni and Sue Groschopf. For the past decade, we’ve been experimenting with firing strategies, loading techniques, and wood-fire specific clay bodies. There have been some successes and some massive failures. We mix our own clays and glazes and we fire with wood. Every piece fired in a wood kiln is unique, due to the volatile process inherent in wood-firing. The surfaces on the pots vary depending on wood type, atmosphere, placement, temperature and clay used. We always fire with friends, family, and local clay enthusiasts, as we love sharing this unique and ancient way of crafting with our community.

I fire my work in an Anagama style wood-kiln, over 5 days to cone 10. Over the last decade, I have been experimenting with clay recipes, slip surfaces, and firing techniques. The last series of work was made with two self-glazing porcelains and a darker terracotta-based stoneware.

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