I hadn’t been back to Indonesia, where I grew up, for 9 years. My mom’s 60th birthday was a big enough reason to finally make the big trip to re-visit the amazingly exotic and-yet-so-familiar environs of Bali, Java and Singapore. Besides my mom’s birthday in Singapore, the hilight for me was returning to the island of Bali which has given me, almost daily, the inspiration to pursue combining art and function in a life dedicated to craft.
Besides revisiting places and friends in Bali and discovering the new ways it has evolved, my main activity was building my mom a wood-fired cook stove. I researched traditional stoves in villages around where we live and then combined what I’ve learned about building fuel-efficient
stoves and sealing the smoke inside a chimney path to come up with a design.
I attribute much inspiration to the great information and design provided by Richard Jussel through the MHA website.
Here are photos from the proces of building this clay cook stove…….
soil-sand ratios to find the best mortar mix
sifting volcanic sand
Rafi, my assistant, and I in the mixing pit
Rafi on stone detail
creating the smoke pathway
we used fired brick for a more durable top surface and chimney…
… and lath (probably overkill) to hold the plaster and prevent expansion cracks
my mom gets in on the plaster action (plaster made with beach sand we collected)
steel fabrication team comes and we secure the stack
a wok we buy at the market makes the perfect rain hat
my mom and Ibu Kerni, our friend and guide to village life, next to finished stove
Rafi and I celebrating a finished project
a priestess’ assistant comes to help make the proper offerings for the first-fire ceremony
the first fire
more photos when the rest of the building is finished!