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Manousos Chalkiadakis: Master Ceramist from the Shores of Greece

Posted by
on January 25, 2016 at 05:23 PM

The word craft feels so provincial and unimaginative - conjuring whimsical images of cups, bowls, vases that range from the minimal to the eccentric, and the abstract to the explicit. Yet ceramics have been reborn in recent years, considered as an affirmative art; interestingly developed by artists around the world. The craft has fashioned a language that balances nature and science through a narrative sculptural medium, evolutionarily conceptualized and developed for the contemporary world.

© Courtesy of Internet Sources.

Pics: 1-12. Pottery by Manousos Chalkiadakis

Manousos Chalkiadakis is one of the most exhilarating established artists from Greece working with clay, has deeply carved; contoured sculptural ceramics; that are originally crafted from the “classical technique” of pottery making; are highly impressive, thus transforming clay into striking vases, boats, fruits, spinning tops and balloons. The technique involves the employment of oxides of diverse metals (iron, cobalt, copper), that creates the dainty desired colours to the objects that characterize his work. The process is executed under two stages; where the object is fired twice firstly without glaze at 1000C and for the second time at 1200C, where the object is completely enamelled.

Pics: 13-15. Glimpses of the home

The modest artist - one of Greece’s most endowed ceramicists - experiments with different forms of art like jewellery, photography, painting, but is captivated by pottery. Born in Hania Crete in 1948,  Chalkiadakis studied Economics and later, Accounting but his artistic spirit eventually took over. In 1987 he returned to Hania and settled in Paidohori, Apokoronas, a small village at the foot of "Lefka Ori" (White Mountains). He then revamped a18th century Venetian ruin, creating his studio  and one of the most amazing houses in the Cretan countryside.

The studio is strikingly impressive - designed primarily along the lines of the main house, and also inspired by Crete’s culture. It is now a must-visit place on the itinerary of the creative tourist - whether architectural admirers or design enthusiasts. Workshops and exhibitions are  organized in the studio where you can see the artist at work; and learn from the master  craftsman, a few things about the magical world of ceramic art!

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