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Terracotta Pottery Museum

Pre-industrial ceramics: tiles and pottery

<p>Pottery stall, La Rambla, Figueres, 1888-1889. Author: Josep Maria Ca&ntilde;ellas. Rubaudonadeu Album - Fages de Climent Library.</p>

Pottery stall, La Rambla, Figueres, 1888-1889. Author: Josep Maria Cañellas. Rubaudonadeu Album - Fages de Climent Library.

Tile and pottery making are both linked to predominantly rural societies, and an agricultural-based subsistence economy. Traditional pottery covered daily needs: cooking, eating, drinking, etc. La Bisbal pottery is characteristically made by wheel turning, and fired just once in wood fired kiln (single firing) with three types of finish: matte or rustic (for construction and livestock), smoke fired (for household items, given a black colour by the smoke) and glazed or varnished (pale yellow, red and green colours made using slip, or lead or galena varnish). Decorating with varnish was limited to certain types of pottery (for jugs, buckets, pans, bedpans); however in order to give colour to crockery (plates, trays, bowls, dishes) local slips were used(red and white).

Tiles were produced to fulfil different functions for construction. These products are rough, austere and simple; objects made to endure, sustain and support, and made to be very resistant. The tile pieces are made by hand, following the same process where the only difference is the wooden mould that shapes each tile. The tile work itself is characterised by its square and rectangular shapes, which vary in thickness and do not have any decorative features. It could be said that some of these pieces, although they still follow the same process as pottery, have more in common with stones that ceramics, due to their size, thickness and weight.


<p>Jug. Inscription: <em>Joseph Vicens tarricer / me fesit a dia 29 de / mars del any 1749</em>. (Joseph Vicens Tarricer / made on 29 / March 1749) Use: wine jug.</p>
Wine jug
Wine jug
<p>Fan tile. Tile decorated with a series of lines which converge at one point, creating a fan shape.</p>
Fan tile
Fan tile
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