It was by chance I got into her Thursday evening class at the Irvine Fine Arts Center. I liked her class because she allowed me to do what I wanted to do, instead of following a set of requirements. After learning the basics of the material, I usually set off on my own, but she was always there when I needed technical help or explanation. I moved out of the area three years later and my ceramic exploration stopped for the next 10+ years.
When I decided to return to clay again in 2004, Julia was still teaching the same Thursday evening class. I signed up, showed up and the first thing she said to me was "I recognized your name" and smiled.
In each 10-week class, we would have a live model session and we try our hand in creating miniatures of the model. Figures were not my forte.
I've always admired Julia's style in figure modelling. She would put bits of clay together and in the end, her piece would capture the essence of the human pose. The marks and textures she left in the clay are what I find most interesting. She never tried to smooth out her figures.
Most of them don't have titles. But I discovered when I got home that the second piece down was signed and titled "Teardrops Fall, 2001.
14"H. Untitled, unsigned. Raku fired.
I call this piece "Blue faced woman."
"Teardrops Fall" 2001. Julia Klemek. 9"H.
10"H. Untitled, unsigned
I call this piece "Woman with Colorful Robe."
"A good teacher recognizes the potential of his/her student. And guides them to discover their own natural gift." Anthony Foo