Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Heath Factory Tour/ Sausalito

Left: Some pieces ready to be fired after glazed, Right: Outside the factory

Left: Inside the factory, Experimenting with glazes, Right: Outside the factory

Left: A collection of pieces in production, Right: Molds used to pour clay into to form shapes

Left: Tiles being experimented with in terms of glaze, Right: Racks of unfired bowls

Left: Racks of unfired pieces, Right: Looking into the Mold room

Left: An old tiled mural inside on the Factory floor, Right: New glazes in neon yellow

Left: Shelves of product ready to hit the stores, Right: Old tiles mounted on screen on Factory floor

Left: Detail of finished product, Right: Staff entrance 

Left: Screen outside made with original vintage tiles, Right: Heath bowl used as water bowl for Doggy visitors

Left: Outside of Factory, looking into store, Right: Detail of tiled wall outside factory made with Heath tiles

Left: Tiled partition screen , outside of Factory Entrance, Right: Cute pot of succulents

Left: Detail of product in the store, Right: New product available in the store

Left: Inside the store at the discounted area, Right: Detail of old tiled wall
Inside the store, Some of the glazes and colors shown on display

Do you remember those school excursions where you would go and visit a factory? I remember going to a biscuit (cookie) factory as a kid and watching in awe as all my favorite ones did the rounds on large conveyor belts. Last weekend I went with fellow Stylist Glen Proebstel to The Heath Factory in Sausalito, In San Francisco. We are both here for the same client working on a project with them and we both had Sunday afternoon off to venture via Ferry across the Bay from The Ferry Building in San Francisco to go on our very own field trip.

A couple of weeks ago I did a post on Heath Ceramics and Edith Heath, its founder. How excited was I to actually venture to where it all began. The original factory is pretty much in it’s original state, Sure they have updated a lot of the kilns and over time you get layers of modern appliances and fittings, but squint and you could almost be back in time.

We got there just in time to join the tour, for anybody planning to go, this is a must! You basically enter the factory with your guide who takes you around in a loop around the factory floor explaining the different techniques and different areas where the molds and clay are formed, where the pieces are glazed, the tile room where all the tiles are manufactured. A station where one of Heath’s employees gets to experiment with different techniques and glazes all day, also working on collaborations with other Artists. You get to see the stock room where all the finished product lives before it’s shipped out, a display case with Vintage Heath pieces and then finally the shop where is you leave empty handed it would be a miracle.  

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