Italian ceramics, or I should say Italian pottery, have been in my life for quite a long time: I collect them, I read about them, I sell them.
In Italian, when I say ceramica, everybody understands what I mean. On the contrary, when I talk with one of my American Customers, I’m always uncertain: should I say Italian Pottery, Italian Ceramics or Italian Majolica?
In order to do away with any doubt, I did some research. I did learn quite a lot on the subject and I would love to share my findings with you.
Let’s start with technicalities.
Here is a short review of the definition of the words Ceramics, Pottery and Majolica.
Once we know exactly what we are talking about, we will define what they really mean to people.
Dec. 11, 2010 – Jan. 9, 2011
Otranto – Italy
Grottaglie has been a hot spot for pottery making in Italy since the Middle Ages thanks to its distinctive style and its varied shapes.
The production of Nativity scenes made of painted terracotta started in the 19th century. The figurines were very small: shepherds, angels, the three Kings, Mary, Joseph and Jesus being the key miniature characters of a tiny yet detailed landscape.
At the end of the 19th century the Nativity scenes made in Grottaglie were so popular that many pottery makers specialized in this peculiar art, making celebrated masterpieces. The most famous artists were Petraroli, Manigrasso, Micera, Esposito, Peluso.
Sept. 29, 2010 – April 3, 2011
Naples – Italy
How did women live 2500 years ago in the Mediterranean regions? An answer to this question is provided by a splendid exhibition, now open in Naples. It features thirty vases made between the 5th and the 3rd century b.C. and found in Ruvo di Puglia, an area in the South of Italy that at the time was part of the Great Greece.
Using the typical red figure technique, the pottery makers painted on their vases scenes from women’s daily life.
Queens in their own house, they spent there most of their time. They are depicted while busy in their homely chores, weaving colorful fabrics for their clothes, nursing their children, leaving their bedrooms to meet their husbands in the thalamos, the common bedroom. Outside their house, wedding celebrations and death rituals were women’s most important public activities. Continue reading
Until November 4, 2010
Faenza – Italy
The International Museum of Ceramics (MIC) in Faenza is hosting an original art event. Eight Art Galleries have been invited to display their collections of modern ceramic works in the new 20th century building.
The list of the artists is impressive: James Brown, Walter Cascio, Giacinto Cerone, Giosetta Fioroni, Mirella Guasti, Luca Lanzi, Leoncillo, Luigi Mainolfi, Renato Meneghetti, Aldo Mondino, Antonello Santè P., Germano Sartelli, Nanni Valentini, Antonio Violetta, Sergio Zanni.
Some of the artists are already represented in the permanent collections of the Museum, while others are featured for the first time.
MIC is the largest and most representative museum of Ceramics in Italy. Its mission is to establish Ceramics as a primary form of Art and one of its key strategies is an active support for contemporary International and Italian Ceramic Art, especially since the expansion of the original buildings. Continue reading
Sept. 4 – 26, 2010
Gubbio – Italy
The exhibition opening today in Gubbio will feature the work by Umbrian ceramic artists Lucia Angeloni (Gubbio) and Maurizio Tittarelli Rubboli (Gualdo Tadino).
Their pieces have been conceived as part of a large installation. Tin glazed pottery and luster glazed majolica will play with lights to show all their magic.
The two ceramic artists have very different styles but they share a fine craftsmanship and a distinctive use of the third firing. For this exhibition they will test their limits and experiment with new techniques, in the attempt to inject innovation into ceramic art and stimulate their fellow artists from Umbria to do the same, thus honouring the splendid tradition of this Italian region.
Aug. 29 – Sept. 12, 2010
Todi – Italy
This year the Art Festival in Todi features an additional event: a small but very qualitative ceramic exhibition organized by the Ab Ovo Art Gallery and titled “Zeus and Europa”.
Features artists: Antonella Cimatti, Wanda Fiscina, Victor Greenaway, Kati Junger, Rebecca Maeder, Rita Miranda, Luca Schiavon, Roland Summer, Ane-Katrine Von Bulow, Christina Wiese.
Leonardo Persico, owner of the Art Gallery, explains why he picked up this unusual name: “the idea was to be in line with the theme of Todi Art Festival, Cupid and Psyche. So I tried to dig into my school reminiscences and I came up with another myth, perfect for a ceramic exhibition, Zeus and Europa”.
Starting Sept. 2, 2010 in Paris, then on tour around the world until 2014
This event is meant to be an earthquake for (Italian) art and artistic ceramics, a powerful and meaningful attempt to change the course of its currently uneventful history – we’re open for discussion on this statement. Send in your comments!
We received the press release of the exhibition a few weeks ago from Nicola Boccini, founder of the CLS (Free Experimental Ceramics Association) and the creator of this extraordinary event. We grasped that something important was going on and we refused to publish it as is, meaning without first hand info and more clues on what the revolution was.
Yesterday we had a long talk with Nicola Boccini. Now we are definitely ready to tell you all about Evolution art /r/evolution.
Until September 5, 2010
A small exhibition, with little advertising, if any. It’s held in a city where the evolution of pottery has taken the direction of Art, leaving to other Italian towns the role of keeping traditional artistic ceramics alive. It’s featured in a Museum which has not been championing women so far.
All the artists presenting their works are women making their pottery in Faenza. Today.
Sept. 4- 5, 2010
Faenza – Italy
Launched only two years ago, Argillà has already become the largest International pottery festival in Italy. In a few weekends almost 200 selected ceramicists from Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Nederland, Austria, Slovenia and Croatia and other European countries will display their works in the historical district in Faenza.
A great chance for anyone to discover the world of pottery and pottery makers, to learn more about ceramics or just to have fun.