Montpelier clay artist Mary Stone
There is a cluster of clay artists in the 7th grade interested in making clay whistles. Over the past two years, some of these students have made “the biggest clay whistle in the world” and many other smaller whistles. This group has explored how the size of the whistle affects the sound and how tone holes function. They have spent hours developing various methods for making the “fipple” - the opening that makes the whistle “work,” and have strived for improving both form and function.
What good luck that I tuned in to a VPR radio program featuring Mary Stone, a local artist who specializes in clay whistles. Mary lives in Montpelier, and her work can be found at Artisan’s Hand gallery on Main Street next to The Skinny Pancake. We invited Mary to the CBMS art studio to share her knowledge and love of clay whistles. She described her own work and process, exchanged notes with fellow whistle makers, and left behind a tiny clay chickadee whistle, for us to fire in our own kiln.
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