||This paper describes the research leading up to and a description o f the MFA thesis exhibit titled "Tailings." The exhibit addresses the increasing saturation o f our environment with pollutants, toxins, and manufacturing waste through sculptural work that contains or represents the physical process o f saturation and/or material examples of the pollutants and waste. For many o f the works, the post-firing or post-construction application o f potentially reactive liquids into the pieces mirrors the reactivity and mobility o f toxins and pollutants in the environment The sculpture bodies used to make the exhibit work contain traditional clay ingredients with additional materials added to produce a strong yet porous media. The porcelain and stoneware clay bodies incorporate organic material that bums out during firing to create hard but permeable pieces that are sometimes soaked in colorants or chemicals. Some o f the clay pieces have metal embedded inside that volatilizes during firing producing a friable, crystalline residue on the exterior. Others pieces were unfired, made with a mixture o f concrete and clay. In addition, this paper describes some o f the preliminary research involving clay bodies and construction techniques. This includes use o f armatures, molds, and the use of various techniques and tools to cut, texture and aid in the construction o f the work; and techniques for the application o f colorants.