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Terracotta Pottery Museum

Industrial ceramics

<p>La Gabarra Factory in 1916. Next to the entrance to the warehouse is a lever press. Photo: Unknown author. Terracotta Museum image bank.</p>

La Gabarra Factory in 1916. Next to the entrance to the warehouse is a lever press. Photo: Unknown author. Terracotta Museum image bank.

The use of machinery in the ceramics industry revolutionised the traditional production system, and meant that some of the potters' work could be carried out in minutes, where before they took a considerable amount of time and effort. The concept of industrial ceramics applies to all processes related to pottery in which manual labour is replaced by non-human forces, or rather by mechanical and electrical methods. Suffice to say that the industrialisation of ceramics did not occur suddenly, but gradually, and therefore for many years the industry continued using techniques and tools inherited from the pre-industrial era.

Mechanisation facilitated a significant reduction in the manufacturing time for a given object, especially objects produced using serial processes, and allowed for a clear reduction in manufacturing costs. The quality of a mechanically produced object tends to be lower, although the higher the degree of technical knowledge in every stage, the easier it is to use a machine properly and ensure optimal use.

OBJECTS

<p>Tile cutter, used to shape the clay and model it using a metal mould at the end of the machine.</p>
Tile cutter
Tile cutter
<p>Train loaded with tiles at La Bisbal station. Author: Emili Casas. Regional Archives of Baix Empord&agrave; (Arxiu Comarcal del Baix Empord&agrave;).</p>
Train loaded with tiles
Train loaded with tiles
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