Fred Parker Pottery

Artisans share their Teaware Art.

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Jun 23rd 09 6:16 pm
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Fred Parker Pottery

by FredParkerPottery » Jun 23rd 09 6:16 pm

Hello everyone. I am Fred Parker; a retired architect and potter living in Middle Georgia who makes (among other things) tea bowls and tea mugs. Victoria introduced me to TeaChat some time ago, and when the TeaArtisans group formed she immediately and graciously invited me to participate. I have enjoyed TeaChat immensely, and feel very fortunate to have the opportunities to discuss my work with such a knowledgeable group. I am also very much impressed by the work of other potters here. It is humbling to be in the company of such accomplishment.

I work in stoneware and porcelain. I fire in oxidation in an electric kiln. Stoneware is my workhorse; porcelain is my “heroin.” Although I accept it is an “acquired” taste, I favor unglazed stoneware because I like to exploit visual opportunities within the clay itself. I also love it because that is the way clay was used for centuries before glazes came into common use. My unglazed stoneware is fired to near complete vitrification. Consequently its performance is not unlike glazed ware. Unfortunately for me, I am one of a very small group who has this affinity for unglazed ware so I also glaze stoneware vessels – sometimes on the inside only.

Porcelain has a reputation among potters for being hard to get along with. I say it is my "heroin" because, in spite of its reputation it can deliver incredible “highs” when things go well. It can also plunge potters into dark pits of depression when they don't. I have boxes of porcelain failures in my basement -- each box representing much hard, tedious work. I keep them in the hope I can someday salvage something from them. Always, I go back to porcelain because I have to. I am careful to keep a supply stashed away someplace...

Here are a few example pieces I selected to give you a sense of teaware I have done. Other work is listed on my Etsy webshop at although inventory might be low currently.

First, some stoneware tea bowls. One is completely unglazed; the others are glazed inside only. Those that are partially glazed also have a slip coating inside to render a lighter-colored base for the glaze to preserve its ability to showcase the tea’s color.

Next: porcelain tea vessels: the first is a traditional form, thrown thin enough to be translucent. The second is more playful -- a slightly altered vertical “goblet” form that was completely spontaneous and unplanned. I made it after throwing a series of very rigid, predefined pieces. The third is another very playful “goblet” form that was altered after throwing then glazed with multiple glazes.

Finally: two small glazed stoneware tea mugs. For me tea mugs are opportunities well beyond containment of tea. I want mine to entertain. They should precipitate reflection or simply remind their owner that it’s OK to color outside the lines occasionally. I spent many years in offices and know how mind-numbing it can be. I hope my mugs can bring a morsel of playfulness to someone's office cubicle or perhaps brighten a Monday morning staff meeting somewhere. If one causes someone, who would never allow herself to do it before, to enter through the “exit” doors at Wal-Mart I will be satisfied…

Thank you all for your interest in my work. I look forward to becoming a part of this group...

Last edited by FredParkerPottery on Jun 23rd 09 8:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Jun 23rd 09 6:21 pm
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by Victoria » Jun 23rd 09 6:21 pm

I am honored to be the first to welcome you to our forum! Welcome!

I have several pieces of Fred's meticulous work and I have to say they are all beautiful and quite perfect down to every last detail. You can see the time and love and craftsmanship involved in each piece. I have been a follower since I first spotted his shop on Etsy, over a year now.

I am so glad you decided to join us!

Last edited by Victoria on Jun 23rd 09 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by geeber1 » Jun 23rd 09 6:22 pm

Hi Fred, welcome! Beautiful work!

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by Moss » Jun 23rd 09 6:44 pm

Welcome Fred. Beautiful work. Love the porcelain pieces in the middle there.
Matt Brown
Moss Beach Ceramics

Available at Teance tea room, Berkeley, California

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by Ebtoulson » Jun 23rd 09 7:01 pm

Welcome fellow Georgian :D. The very first tea bowl, completely unglazed, is my favorite. Truly amazing.

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by Geekgirl » Jun 23rd 09 7:13 pm

Fred!!! Wonderful to see you here! Folks, I have 5 or 6 of Mr. Parker's pieces, and each one is beautiful as well as functional. You can see a few of them in use here.

By the way, that completely unglazed cup at the very top is stunning, and it would match my other partially unglazed cup so well... :wink:

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by hooksie » Jun 23rd 09 7:19 pm


Welcome Fred; I too have an affinity for unglazed pottery. Wonderful to see a potter who favors this style join the forum.
We were fated to pretend.

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by shyrabbit » Jun 23rd 09 7:46 pm


I love the first porcelain tea vessel....powerfully understated. The playful foot is a nice surprise. I look forward to seeing more of your work.


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by Chip » Jun 23rd 09 7:52 pm

Welcome Fred to TeawareArtisans. I hope to see many of your teawares here. Great cups :!:
blah blah blah SENCHA blah blah blah!!!

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aloha fred !

by bonjiri » Jun 23rd 09 9:39 pm


welcome to the tea artisan section !

i love the porcelain , translucent pieces !
cool !

welcome !


cory (bonjiri)

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by clareandromeda » Jun 23rd 09 10:52 pm

cool stuff, I especially like the middle porcelain piece. I def. see motion in it. It looks in the photos like it is still spinning on the wheel. The indent looks like a perfect spot for a thumb! The Handles on the mugs are fab, they remind me of fancy ribbon bows people put on presents.

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by Little pig » Jun 24th 09 12:47 am

Lovely stuff Fred

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by Trioxin » Jun 24th 09 6:05 am

Just had to include photo's of my broken beauty huh? If you ever happen to make another, make sure to reserve it for Ryan.

Welcome to the forum Fred. Loving my three new cups. I'm currently up to four pieces, not including the one I accidentally killed. Got hooked after seeing one of Victorias cups.

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by woozl » Jun 24th 09 9:00 am

wifey has a knitting bowl, I use it for matcha when she is not looking 8)
“Take some more tea,” the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.
“I’ve had nothing yet,” Alice replied in an offended tone: “so I ca’n’t take more.”
“You mean you ca’n’t take less,” said the Hatter: “it’s very easy to take more than nothing.”

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by Victoria » Jun 24th 09 1:12 pm

woozl wrote:wifey has a knitting bowl, I use it for matcha when she is not looking 8)
Ha! I have been eyeing those knitting bowls for the same purpose!!!
Some of them have been just stunning!! Like this: