The art of ceramics 

Corso di ceramica
Wokring su un tornio
Bottiglie di ceramica

The term (from the Greek keramos, "clay") refers to the production of clay objects, which are then baked. The history of ceramics follows the history of civilizations, from the discovery of fire. Burnt clay is used in all societies - from the most ancient to the "primitive", passing through the East and the West - for the realization of decorative objects, utilities and other ritual purposes. Scholars identify the first ceramics from the 5th century to the C., in the region of Anatolia (Asia Minor), which began to integrate, from there, the most diverse cultures, distant in time and space. The sinuous and asymmetrical lines, the shapes of the plants and the floral ornaments are present in the vases, appliances and objects of Émile Gallé (1846 - 1904), one of the best known names of this school, known for the use of ceramics and glass. In Austria, members of the Viennese Secession, such as the painter Gustav Klimt (1862 - 1918), create art nouveau design ceramic vases and objects. In Germany, ceramics found refuge in the Bauhaus, through various artists such as Theodor Bogler (1896 - 1968), Lucia Moholy (1894 - 1989), Marguerite Wildenhain (1896 - 1985) and Margarete Heymann-Marks (1899 - sd). The formal tendencies of research and constructivism characteristic of the scholastic production created by Walter Gropius (1883 - 1969) are presented in ceramic objects of straight lines and sober decorations, inspired, from the point of view of decoration, by the style developed by Piet Mondrian (1872 - 1944) and Theo van Doesburg (1883 - 1931): the purity of lines and the use of colors. As well as Bruno Munari (1907 - 1998), an artist linked to Italian Futurism; Pablo Picasso (1881 - 1973), in turn, produces painted ceramic plates; Vassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) decorates porcelain, creating designs for the state porcelain factory in Leningrad, Russia. Japan holds the longest history in the world in the art of burning clay to make containers. The first pieces were “jomon” pottery that emerged 16,000 years ago. The pieces are made of clay which is crumpled and molded and then burned in the fire to make it solid and durable. Through this process it is possible to impart knowledge, technique, aesthetic sense and added values to ceramics. Here we present the variety and charm of ceramics represented by different styles and schools.

Paola Zannini, artistic name Smita. 

In 2015 he embarked on the path of ceramics. 

He studied clay working with the lathe and the Japanese RAKU technique. His ceramics become original and fascinating. "the contact with the clays becomes a creative encounter, where I create space, chance and freedom.  I look for my originality through the forms.  I interact with each clay.  The contact envelops me, kidnaps me and leads me to the desire to express myself ". 

The Raku technique was created, by chance, in the second half of the 16th century in Japan by a craftsman named Chojiro. Around this time for the "tea ceremony"  which spread among the people (initially it was part of a rite of the monks and the noble classes) began a great demand for appropriate cups. To quickly create ceramics that had an aged and worn appearance, Chojiro used the same type of material and technique that was used in the production of tiles: sandy clays and extraction from the kiln as soon as the coating reached the melting point.

The thermal shock due to cooling gave them that aged and precious look. The main difference between majolica (traditional ceramic) and Raku lies in the fact that the majolica object after firing cools down in the kiln and instead in Raku it moves on to the next phase, the reduction, in which oxygen is reduced by introducing smoke-producing substances in the oven (sawdust, leaves, paper, brown sugar) or, before taking them out of the oven.