Our large rustic pottery bowls are glazed with colored glazes (in this case a bright brown or green) to give a mottled colour-on-colour spongeware appearance. The primitive nature of the bowls is enhanced by the unglazed underside, revealing their terracotta clay base. As these are vintage pieces, occasional dents and chips are age related.
Diameter about 30cm
Height about 8 cm
Once you start buying handcrafted ceramics, particularly from parts of the world where they are made the traditional way, you need to put aside all thoughts of an immaculate bowl or jug and learn to develop an eye for the joy of difference . In a country like Afghanistan, potters still shed the hump, using rough local clay mixed with plant fibers, grog and quartz. While this mixture provides strength to the structure when drying and ease when the fiber is burned out in the kiln, it can result in indentations in the surface if the matter being burned out burns out instead! However, some of these pots might as well surprise with the golden quartz flecks that dot the surface of a bowl we bought. Traditional ways of packaging kilns also mean that most bowls can bear the marks of the "stilts" placed to tell the bowls apart. 3 small marks in the inner center of the bowl indicate that bowls were placed on top of each other, separated by some kind of pad. In a country where wood-fired kilns are scarce and trees are scarce, potters cannot afford the luxury of placing each bowl individually on a separate shelf, as one would in the West.
Unlike glazes used in the West, most potters in Afghanistan and the Swat Valley, Pakistan, stick to a few traditional recipes rather than indulge in the luxury of experimentation.
One thing western buyers should always keep in mind is that such bowls are useful as a fruit bowl or for serving bread - but stay away from other food uses where wet food could come in contact with the glaze. Many of the finest glazes in Central Asian pottery used lead and are therefore not food safe for such use. I would also never recommend putting handmade pottery in the dishwasher –
The signs of use give the ceramic bowls a special aura. The old patina differs significantly from today's craftsmanship.
These unique bowls are not industrially manufactured mass-produced goods, but are of high-quality craftsmanship with many lovingly crafted details.
*Due to photography and handwork, color variations may occur.
*Decoration is not part of the offer.
If you have any further questions about this article, please do not hesitate to contact us! We will send you more photos on request if required!