Born in Canberra ACT, Wiedenhofer attended Canberra School of Art, 1980-1982 under the tutelage of Terry Moore, Alan Watt, Alan Peascod, Owen Rye, and Hiroe Swen. He moved to Tanja, on the far south coast NSW, in 1993 to set up his pottery studio, and has dedicated his practice to the use of anagama and other wood kilns. He has since received many recognitions Internationally as a significant contributor to this field.
“Wood firing chose me. I have followed an idea(l) more or less blindly for what must be life. I made my life-bed in a forest with a dam, escaping convention. The lure is a freedom to pursue open truths in clay and poverty. Wealth surrounds otherwise. To choose wood firing is to dive head-long into a cool depth of energy flow, a life-world of thermodynamics. No page is numbered. My first encounter was attempting to bisque fire using 200 common bricks in 1976.
Time is the magic dimension here, passaged from within.
A photocopy of brick layout for this wood kiln was floating around. There was no text. Long flames proved deadly. Serious wood firing began four years later under Alan Peascod at ANU with a Bizen kiln and a force-draft salt kiln. Unfortunately I now have too much choice in wood kilns. What I come to believe for one kiln does not necessarily carry. I prefer the anagama and the down-draft lustre, eight days and under two.”