About Us

Ciao a tutti! Hi there!

If you opened this page and feel like learning more about us, either you love our blog or you hate it…

Since we like the first option better, Umbria countrysidewe officially invite you to spend some time with us. Ideally in our country house in Umbria, under a vine pergola, slowly sipping a cup of Italian coffee or English tea, pending on the mood and the season. Too bad we can’t. We have to stick to the Internet, which is however a wonderful tool to nurture a friendship. That is indeed how, Manuela and I, Tiziana, have been keeping in touch for a very long time.

We became friends a long time ago, when we both lived in Rome. We met thanks to our husbands and click … we liked each other so much that we’ve never stopped talking. When I say talking, I  mean serious subjects such as love, life, motherhood, emotions. She left Rome to go to Prague, then London and Singapore. I spent some time in Brussels, Pescara and Geneva. Our friendship survived all the minor inconveniences and major events we had to face as professionals, women,  mothers and wives (last but not list, eh, eh) . It even survived thatsArte.com! But that is the best part of the story, so I’ll slow down a bit.

After a long diaspora, a couple of years ago Manuela and I came to live at acceptable distance. She moved to Perugia, I moved to Viterbo. Not close enough to meet every week, but still, we could plan to spend some time together pretty often. We were so excited! We decided we must exploit this unexpected gift and do something special together.

Manuela (left) and Tiziana (right) in Caltagirone, SicilyWe both have a lifetime passion for Italian pottery, hence the idea to set up a collection of the ceramic items we liked the most and to start a business overseas, where our Italian artistry is not very well know, but still very much appreciated.

We had a lot of fun together, although I can’t say everything was smooth. Both Manuela and I have a very strong personality and we are very opinionated (I shall say stubborn, to be completely honest). A very hard test for our friendship. Which did survive, as you can see!

Manuela is a very creative soul. Yet she pays a great attention to details. An uncommon quality in creative people, that does wonders for thatsArte.com. We traveled together to choose the items for our selection of Italian pottery and we took more than 10.000 pictures of ceramic items for the site. Manuela edited ALL the ones we feature and in addition she revised all the databases. Now she works on the subjects for the blog articles, she looks for and edits the appropriate images and, as you know if you’ve ever placed an order at thatsArte.com,  she is busy with our Customers’ purchases.

I’m the writer, as you can see, and the “contact” person. Writing in English is very challenging for me, and I’m sure that my texts must sound very weird to native English speakers. But still, I discovered I enjoy writing and as far as people understand what I mean I keep going.

We make all the decisions related to thatsArte together. Yet we manage to spend some time talking about ourselves and, most importantly, to enjoy our kids, our taste for good food and good books.

Thank you for visiting us and enjoy!

Tiziana & Manuela

48 thoughts on “About Us

  1. Ciao Tiziana e Manuela,
    Solo oggi, girando per internet, mi sono imbattuto nel vostro Itakian Pottery Journal, che non conoscevo. Complimenti. Mi ha fatto molto piacere vedere pubblicata la notizia della mia mostra Stupori, finzioni,ecc. Mi è piaciuto, e vi ringrazio molto.
    Non mancherò di visitarvi, di tanto in tanto, e di mandarvi qualche notizia, come quella imminente di una nuova mostra in un mio spazio nuovo nuovo, fra un paio di settimane. Vi farò sapere. Buon lavoro, Sandro Lorenzini

  2. I have 6 very nice Filippino Lippi Renaissance majolica hand painted plaques. I would like to know who might be interested in these exquisite pieces. If you have any information, please contact me and I can send pictures.

    Thanks you,

    Jeff Hayes

  3. Hello,

    My name is Hallie Richards and I am trying to contact Tiziana, Manuela or both! I am a fine arts student from Los Angeles, California in the U.S.A. I will be graduating this year and I am hoping to be able to travel to Caltigirone, Sicily to study some of the ancient forms of pottery and meet traditional artisans in this area. I am flexible, however, and would love to meet artisans from anywhere that you may suggest. I am writing on this blog because my e-mail would not go through and I write in hope that you may help me to contact artisans/ artists that would be willing to show me their craft and way of life. It seems that you both have a lot of experience with artisans in this region and I am hoping that I may be able to talk with you as well and that you may share your knowledge with me. I hope that you will e-mail me back at HRichard5717@scrippscollege.edu so that I may better explain my project. As an artist I truly respect the work that you do and I thank you for it! Have a nice day.

    -Hallie Richards

  4. I have a 21″ lusterware charger that may have been created by Alfredo Santarelli, or perhaps one of his pupils. The center painting portrays the murder of Julius Caesar. Caesar lies dead or unconscious on a chaise. Anthony stands in front of the chaise with a raised cup, while seven men surround the chaise; one man holds a dagger over Caesar, and three men are toasting Anthony.

    The charger is in perfect condition. The foot ring is beautifully crafted. On the back someone has written “L. R” (no dot after the r), and below that it simply says “Italy”. Do you know if L. R is an abbreviation meaning “in the region”, or could it be the initials of a student of Santarelli?

    I hope you can tell me more about my gorgeous charger. I bought it in Texas in the 90s and eventually put it into storage for safekeeping when my children were young. I have only just brought it out again, hoping the internet would help me learn more about its maker.


  5. Vivo en argentina, aquí nací, soy nieta de italianos, y quedé muy impresionada con esta historia que no conocía, acerca de quien debió haber sido mi antepasado. Mi hermana es artesana, trabaja con vidrio y hace mosaicos, y mucho les agradecería que me informen algo más acerca del arte de Ulises Cantagalli.
    Liliana Cantagalli

  6. Hi. My name is Nicole Kinser. My maiden name is Nicole Riccitiello. This might get jumbled with all the lines, but…My father (Joseph Riccitiello) was married to my mother of course, Lori Grilli. She is the granddaughter of Quirino Grilli, who was the grandson of Clemente Grilli, who was married to a Catrina Cantagalli. Clemente and Caterina lived in Serrone Italy, and their son, Giacinto Grilli, owned a Pottery/Terracotta making shop in the area of Serrone/La Forma italy. My question is…. is it possible at all, that “Caterina Cantagalli” is of the actual “Cantagalli” line? is there any more info on family members? I have hit a road block in my search.

  7. Hello!
    We are Alexander and Tatiana Buzlanov, ceramic-artists from Moscow.
    We have been working in this art for more than twenty years. We have also our ceramic school for adults in the studio.
    We ask you to send us all the information about the different international ceramics events. We and our students will be happy to take part in it.

    Best regards –

    Alexander and Tatiana Buzlanov
    Art-studio “A Dew-drop”

  8. Yes! We have added a widget. Type your email address in the right column and you’ll receive an email when we publish a new article. Thanks, Tiziana

  9. Hello. I have a B&L Gesetzl Gesch majolica duck decanter bottle. I’m told that this is actually a German piece, but wondered if you could help me figure out what it’s worth, and the best way to sell it. It looks to be in perfect condition. If you think you can help me, I can send pictures.
    Thanks so much,

  10. Hi there–Can you tell me anything about the Desimone Pottery? Specifically, is or was there toxic lead used in painting the pottery? I just bought a large bowl and I have no idea where it originally came from. The bottom says “Desimone Italy” and has the numbers 64/5 and the initials L.R. on the bottom. It has what appears to be two cubist -looking fish on the inside of the bowl. I am worried about using it because of potential lead content. Any ideas about if there was or was not lead in the Desimone pottery and if so, when did they stop using lead? I am happy to send a photo if you can help me out. Thank you so much-

  11. I have some Medieval ceramics,…look like Renaissance pottery 1909, art collection. ? John Pierpont Morgan, art collector, Alexandre Imbert, art dealer,..sponsered research for found archeologist from Orvieto . Pottery 13th and 14th centuries, dedicated to JP Morgan, Kings and Queens. looking for any information available about the pieces that I have,. I have 13 pieces, or so. thank you , Kathy Sce . or call me, Facebook me,…thanks

  12. Hi, We will be in Umbria May 14-17 staying in Assisi. I am a potter in the US and have been to Deruta previously but have not been to other ceramic villages. Could you recommend some others? We would love to meet you while in Italy. (We are also going to Sicily .) Are there any special events In Umbria that we should know about. We will have a car.

    Look forward to hearing from you.
    Daryl Shafran

  13. Hello – My apologies that I cannot speak/write Italian, I hope that you can help me since you have a passion for Italian pottery and are experts. I have inherited from my grandparents a set of beautiful Deruta dinnerware purchased in Italy prior to 1965 but not sure when. I want to care for it properly. Would the paint/glaze be lead-free? Do I need to handwash them or can they sometimes be in a dishwasher (no dry)? Thank you for any guidance that you can share, Tracy TracyLDunning!gmail.com

  14. I have a plate my mother bought. I don’t know anything about it. Maybe its just pretty, but would appreciate a quick look if you could. Any info would be appreciated. Can send pics. Its hand panted, floral design, fancy edges, with a ring that stands up in the center, as if to carry it by. On the bottom it is all painted, glazed, with just ‘ italy’ hand painted on the back. Maybe its some sort of serving dish?

  15. I first heard about Majolica ceramics while watching Antiques Roadshow. I was awestruck when a woman had two large leopards that looked to be the same type I have. Hers were sitting up tall, where mine are laying down, but the painting style was the same…the same kind of splotches for spots rather than crist delineation…almost crude features, for lack of a better word. The expert on the show said they were Majolica ceramic. My leopards measure about 14″ x 24″ at the base and are about 20″ tall at the highest point…very heavy. I know they are at least 50 – 60 years old and once owned by a rather well known designer named Don Loper in Hollywood in the 50’s. if any of this is of interest to you, I would be happy to send jpegs. I have no expertise, and I’d be interested to know just what i have here. Thank you for any time you give me on this.

  16. Hi ,

    We’ve just published a big piece about gold during WW1 and WW2 that might be of interest > http://aicoach.co/gold-history

    The reason for my email is that I would like to put our piece forward for inclusion on this page of your website > https://www.thatsarte.com/blog/highlights/lucerna-circus-ceramic-oil-lamp-exhibition/

    Please let me know if you have any questions. If you’d rather not hear from me again simply click reply and let me know.

    Warm Regards,


  17. I have a small salt and pepper shaker set that is hand painted. They both have ‘Norwalk Italy’ written (by hand) on the bottom with small corks as stoppers. Can you give me an idea of their value? Could I send you a picture? Thanks for your help!

  18. I have just acquired a 28″ tall tear drop vase from a local antique dealer in California. It appears to be a mid 20th century Cantagalli maiolica by design and condition. The rooster is hand drawn on the inside of neck…no marks on bottom. There is a hidden mark(s) on one distinctive bird…”CAY” The piece is hand thrown, very lightly crazed and is very good to excellent condition. The ornamentation is mostly large green leaves and gold birds and berries. There is a blue shield with a reclining buck. Interior is glazed white as is under glaze. I did see on E-Bay a cache pot with similar leaves/berries and identified as Cantagalli but they did show marks.
    Any opinion would be appreciated.
    Thank you.

  19. Thank you for setting up this site.

    Do you have any idea where one might purchase a ceramic plaque that features the “IHS” monogram? I am looking for a contemporary item, not vintage or an antique, that could be mounted above the outside door of a Jesuit community; polychrome; preferably a roundel roughly between 6″ and 12″ diameter. I live in the US (in California), and would be comfortable working with an overseas provider, for either a made-to-order or pre-prepared item.

    If anyone might be able to help me in this matter, I would be most grateful.

    Grazie tanto,


    Mark Ciccone, S.J.

  20. hello could you contact me about the Cantagalli family archive please. I would ver much like to contact the Signora you mentioned in your article as I am researching Cantagalli for a PhD in ceramic history. thank you.

  21. Hello, I came across your website while researching a piece which thought to be a Cantagalli flower urn. It has multiple holes at the top and there is the blue flow “rooster” with what looks like Ic or 70 to the right of the rooster. I read your article on Cantagalli and was wondering if you could tell me more about my piece. It measures approximately 27.3 cm or 10 3/4″ h. It is mustard/gold and cobalt blue/white colors in a design. No images, just a design. I was wondering if you could help with the age and if it was made by Ulisse Cantagalli himself. I can send you photos as well if you’d like . Thank you

  22. I have found in upper historical part of Brasov city (Transylvania) a lot of green pottery Medieval (and older) remnants. Could these be of Italian origin? Please, tell me how to send some photos. Grazie!

  23. I have an old Italian soup tureen. Was wondering if you could tell me anything about it? I can send photos. Thanks for your time.

  24. Ciao, ho un grande piatto di 20 inches che mostra una scena con gladiatori romani. Vorrei sapere se si potesse aiutarmi nel identificare di che l’ha fatto, e’ quando. Tante grazie per l’aiuto! Gradevolmento, Thomas di Giammatteo, Spokane WA USA

  25. I enjoyed your article on spotting fakes. Your idealism and truthfulness are so wonderful. I’m inspired by your lives’ stories and how you turned friendship, art and passion for Italy into a lifestyle and business. Thanks for the encouragement.

  26. hello. could i send a picture of my old sauce boat i received from my grandfather who was from sicily?

    I have always wondered if it was a fake or not, worth, brand, etc.

    thank you

  27. Hello, I have a Della Robbia fruit wreath plate given to me 32 years ago it is signed and numbered. How can I find out how much it’s worth?

    It is a yellow plate with the fruit wreath around the edge.
    Thank you

  28. Hello sorry to bother you i have a large italian jug from 11.6.6 it is 100 years old and says made in italy with the mark B. I thpught at first it was majolica. But am in two mind it has very early rivet repair which must be at least 50 years or so old lovely glaze you must see it it stands very tall.
    I am hoping ypu know its provence.
    Thanks Dom

  29. Hello! I’d like to know the worth of my vases/urns! Do you have an email address?

  30. Need help identifying a ceramic piece I found recently. I would love to send you some pictures of you can help identify its authenticity it would be greatly appreciated. Please email me so I can send you pictures.
    Mark Harris

  31. CIao Tiziana & Manuela,
    I have enjoyed your articles. I have a question. I broke a plate (from a reputable shop) and it took 3 years to finally get a new one made, I recently cracked 2 more plates. I am wondering if you are aware of a very good artist in Italy that I could send the plates to, that would be willing to make and paint them, and that might take much less time.?

    Thank you

  32. Hello
    I am commenting to ask if you could publish this information on your events page:

    Gŵyl Serameg Ryngwladol
    International Ceramics Festival
    5th – 7th July 2019
    Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Wales, UK
    Join us for an exciting weekend of ceramic events in the beautiful coastal setting of Aberystwyth in Mid-Wales. There will be live demonstrations, kiln firings, performances, lectures, exhibitions, films and more, featuring ceramicists from China, Japan, Uzbekistan, Italy, Latvia and the UK. Tickets go on sale November 1st 2018.

    Tickets, Information and Booking:
    Box Office (01970) 623232
    Email: aafstaff@aber.ac.uk

    If you need any images please get in touch.

    Many Thanks,

    Bryony Lister
    Assistant Marketing Officer
    International Ceramics Festival

    Louise Chennell
    Curator and Archivist of Ceramics
    01970 622 192

  33. Your English is excellent.

    I have a humble little vase that has been around as long as I can remember. I am 57 years old. I am not concerned with the value, because I have no intention of selling it. What I would like to find out its approximate age. My grand parents came to America from Italy in the early 1900s. I have always wondered if they brought it with them or if it was something my mother bought in the US in the 1950s or 1960s. Would you be able to take a quick look and maybe give me an appropriate age. I am not sure if it is authentic, but can’t imagine my mother would have saved it for so many years unless it had some sentimental value to her. If you can look, how can I send you a couple of photos?

  34. Thank you such interesting posts on beautiful Italian pottery. I recently acquired a piece of maiolica, a small plate, which I love. I’m not sure how old it is though or even if it’s genuine. Would you mind taking a look at it for me? I can find nothing on the net about the marks.

  35. Hello, I have a pair of antique majolica candleholders..they look like Griffins one is holding the shield with the Medici crest the other holding the fleur-de-lis of Florence…a friend’s husband recently died at 97 & he always talked about having this pair as a child… they have the blue rooster painted underneath…but it’s a much more elaborate one that I see that the Cantagalli pottery uses… I have looked on the internet & cant find the exact mark…any help would be appreciated…grazie

  36. Hi I have a bowl that had a matching pitcher that is marked DONI ITALY 24,228 how would I find out if it is valuable or something I can throw out ?

  37. Ciao I wonder if you could give me some history information about Cer.Alfa ceramics. My daughter has been given a beautiful salad bowl of this make and she has been trying to find out some facts about it. Can you help?

  38. I found an ashtray that is marked Italy. I think it could be a Bitossti. May I send you some photos to get your thoughts?

    Thank you,

  39. Can you help me? I bought this piece of pottery for $1.00 at an estate type sal. thing. It is stamped Italy on the bottom. I feel I have seen this pottery style and design somewhere before, so it is possibly and probably a replica. However, I am unable to locate anything on line.

  40. Hello,

    I was wondering if you could help redetermine the value of a plate that has G.P. Deruta on the bottom?

  41. Hello,
    I have two oblong wall plaques.
    Signed Deruta and a signature or mark I can not translate.
    Please do you have a email address I could maybe send you photos to see if they are genuine or fake ?
    Thank you
    They belonged to an elderly relative
    Kindest Regards

  42. Hi Tiziana & Manuela
    Hope you are well and keeping safe during these covid times
    I was given 30 years ago the bowl with heavy us of gold in the markings and around top
    I cannot see any makers name although the name BeZZano maybe something
    Only other markings are Fatto a Mano – which i believe means hand made.
    May I send you photos
    Thank you in advance


  43. I have a vase it says it’s from Italy pottery can you give me so.e details if possible

  44. Hello, I have a piece of pottery which I inherited via my Mother. She does not know where it is from. It appears to be an hors d’oeuvre serving tray with a fish upright in the center as if it were jumping out of the water. It is somewhat striped olive green and white in color. The inscription on the back says GL 1548 Gualdot. Do you think it is Italian? f you are interested in seeing photos of this item, please let me know. I can be reached at the email address submitted with this post. Thank you so much for your time and the dedicated and excellent work you do.

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