Nancy Kuefler (Darm) and the Perfect Curve

(Nancy Kuefler used to be known as Nansea Darm)

I spent the fall of 1971 at Big Creek when I was 19 years old. I had decided that I wanted to skip college and be a potter. Nothing was in focus for me in the academic world- clay grabbed me from the get go when I took my first class in high school. My parents, in their infinite wisdom, let me run with my dream and paid the $800 for eight weeks (maybe nine?) at Big Creek. Room, fabulous food, amazing teaching from Bruce, and a community of like-minded clay enthusiasts all for $100/week.

Like everyone who has attended BC, it was a defining moment in my life, and stands out as one of the most memorable things I have ever done. After BC, I decided that college might be OK if I majored in clay and off I went to the University of Puget Sound because Carlton Ball was there (Throw them big, throw them tall, throw them just like FC Ball). I was there for the full spring term, but have absolutely no memory of Mr. Ball.

But Bruce, in the short time I was at BC, gave me the muscle memory that I retained over the years for throwing a good pot, and instilled the idea of the “ perfect curve” . Remember the beautiful big popcorn bowls with their exquisite half hemisphere shape? Clay goes through cycles of fashion and I remember in the ‘ 80’ s when I took a community class at Archie Bray, the teacher thought I should “ loosen up” and give my pots more “ life” , but I was always looking for that perfect curve and finding it is still what pleases me.

The people that I remember? Debbie Levin. After one semester at UPS, I transferred to U of Oregon to share

a house with her for another semester before we parted ways. I am sorry I lost touch with her. Annette Solomon, from New York. I went back to Nyack, NY to attend her wedding. She married Debbie’ s cousin? Phillip? I visited her once at her home in Ramona, California before I lost
touch. I remember Tim, who must have stayed on at BC since I see him in the pictures posted by Sarah Cowen. The last person I remember is Stephen, who stayed in the big house and told me “ Daniel Rhodes slept in this bed” .

I don’ t know why, but whenever I hear the song “ Maggie May” by Rod Stewart, it is fall and I am back at Big Creek. I recently moved to the Bay Area after being elsewhere for 40 years and am looking forward to the reunion this summer. What a great idea!

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Published in: on March 21, 2011 at 8:48 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. what reunion?
    where do the old posting go on the web site ? they seem to disapear?

    • I’m just about to post a link on the side…

      Since this is a blog, if you click on the “Big Creek Pottery” at the top, you’ll get the whole thing all at once, rather than one posting at a time.


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