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It’s time to start writing and work out agateware matter. That’s a technique, which thanks to joining different colored clays looks like slicked agate stone. Exactly that effect electrifies me! Since I remember, this geode figment of nature delighted me. Besides, they are undeniably easy on the eye; they have also huge range of properties, which favorably influence human being.

Unfortunately an agateware matter isn’t broadly described in the internet. It is known as agateware, nerikomi, but nobody explains what the difference between these names is, and what was first. Where should I find inspiration – Buddhist ritualistic songs or traditional English ballads?

Everything began probably in China during the Tang dynasty (for the curious ones – VII-VIII centuries).By the way I thought it’s confirmed by colorful vessels from this period presented in China Online Museum, but it turned out that it’s an example of totally different technique, Sancai. So, be careful!

chinamuseum
Example of Chinese pottery from Tang dynasty, source: www.comuseum.com

Here, the story slacks off and after eight centuries, from the II half of XVI slightly changes setting and goes on in Japan. One hundred years later the technique began to develop almost 9.5 thousands km away, in England, where John Dwight was creating his first works at a potter’s wheel (unaware that it’s already agateware, he called them marbled). As the rumors say, Europeans stole the idea of agateware from Chinese funeral places and since then they tried hard to imitate it shamelessly. Independently of reliability of this story, agateware gained ground in England. The name, agateware entered dictionaries in the early XVIII century. Its center was a small town, Stoke-on-Trent (which is, nota bene, the center of the ceramics industry of England currently), and its leading artist was Whieldon. In Japan, the golden age of this technique falls on a little later, at the end of XX century (then the term nerikomi appeared too).

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