Our large handmade rustic pottery bowls are glazed with colored glazes (in this case a vibrant braun or green) to achieve a mottled color-on-color spongeware appearance. The primitive nature of the bowls is amplified by the unglazed underside that reveals its terra cotta clay base. As these are vintage pieces, occasional dings and chips are consistent with age.
diameter approx. 30 cm
Height about 8 cm
Once you start buying handmade pottery, especially from parts of the world where it’s made the traditional way, you need to leave aside all thoughts of a flawless bowl or jug, and learn to develop an eye for the joy of the difference. In a land like Afghanistan, potters still throw off the hump, using rough local clay mixed with vegetable fibre, grog and quartz. This mix, while adding strength to the structure while drying, and lightness as the fibre burns out in the kiln, can however result in pits in the surface, if the matter that burns out blows out instead! Yet some of these pots might just as well surprise with the golden flecks of quartz that sprinkle the surface of one bowl we bought. Traditional ways of packing kilns also mean that most of the bowls may well show the marks of the “stilts” placed to keep the bowls apart. 3 little marks in the inside centre of the bowl are evidence that bowls have been placed, one on top of each other, separated by some kind of pad. In a land where kilns are woodfired, and trees are in short supply, potters can’t afford the luxury of standing each bowl apart on a separate shelf, as you’d do in the west.
Unlike glazes used in the west, most potters in Afghanistan and Swat valley pakistan stick to a few traditional recipes, rather than having the luxury of experiments.
The one thing that Western buyers should always bear in mind, is that bowls like this are suited as fruit bowls or for serving bread – but stay away from other food uses that might involve wet foodstuffs coming in contact with the glaze. Many of the most beautiful glazes in central Asian ceramics used lead, and so aren’t food safe for such a use., I would also never recommend putting any handmade ceramics into a dishwasher –
Buyer will receive exact item pictured! Please look at the images carefully before purchasing!
*** Actual item may differ slightly than the image due to image quality, lightening, Contrasts, resolutions and other factors. However, in most cases actual items look better than the images.
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