Design, art and a little bit of RAKU

Talented artist/designer Rachid Koraïchi work is both modern and traditional at the same time. He has studied at all the finest schools. This renowned and versatile French-Algerian artist works in all sorts of material including ceramics, textiles, various metals and painted work on silk, paper or canvas.  
Koraïchi’s art reveal a fascination with signs - both real and imaginary. Beginning with the intricate beauties of the Arabic calligraphic scripts his work is composed of symbols, glyphs and ciphers drawn from a variety of other languages and cultures. 
Koraïchi’s aesthetics are informed not simply by his profound connections to his Sufi North African heritage, but also by his broad experiences within the contemporary art world and the political alliances he has made with Middle Eastern and North African artists and intellectuals engaged with political struggles.
This weekend I'm working by the raku kiln again, and cannot resist giving you this poem, which Rachid Koraïchi has written on the square ceramic plate above. The poem is called At the Raku Firing

Beside a makeshift kiln
we circle one another, 
waiting for the incandescent forms
to be pulled with tongs, 
birthed like that, into open air.

A late September moon marks time
through the beech tree’s brittle leaves
and each pot brought forth is a molten moon,
a source of sudden combustion
to be smothered in sawdust or woodchips
that burst into smoke and flame.  

Later, with woodsmoke lacing my clothes,
I come home, hand him the newmade bowl,
and he, drawn by moonlight, steps outside, alone. 

I go to bed, am tired, have already been out in the moon 
and when he returns, with his moon-cool touch, 
at first I say I don’t want him: 
sleep seems more luscious than sex 
But something about the bowl 
the way I glazed and drew it glowing
from the kiln, crouched there
and hoped for the colors to turn,
the outer wall iridescent,
the interior crackled, white,
with dark lines holding the smoke 

There’s a moon in the bowl, white
in the well and I am a well
I am looking down into
moonlight reflected, contained
in a glaze, selected
from vats of possibility:
the wrist swirls quickly,
fingers holding the bowl by the bottom
a swift twist coast the inner surfaces.

Who knows what fire will do?
I’m lucky, get what I want 
that violet sheen,
those greens and reds
fiery, metallic.
Hope you'll have a great weekend. 
Check out my other blog Creative Living here.