I had been told by numerous people that the Dana Community was the hub of ceramic activity in Auroville, so I made it my mission to visit. It took me a while to find, tucked away in a dusty corner of the labyrinthine town, but when I got there I wasn't disappointed. All hands were on deck, with a bisque kiln being fired and a huge order being packed up for shipment to Germany.
|I would have bought one of these if they weren't so impractical to carry around for the next 2 months in my rucksack. |
|They fire primarily with wood, using some gas too.|
The two main set ups are Flame Pottery and Mandala Pottery but both work together and share clay/firings etc. I saw many different forms being produced on the wheel as well as some slab work. I took lots of pics and a few videos, so it will take a few posts to show them all.
Firstly, some pics of the place itself. There were pots everywhere!
|Some of Anamika's work: incredible surface effects from pit firing.|
A couple of walls had these amazing traditional tribal paintings on them. So exuberant:
|One of the clay drying pans.|
Now on to the first product in detail. It's a simple incense holder, made and sold in the thousands. All this process involves is: rolling out a slab, cutting the shape from a template, cleaning up the edges with a sponge, punching a hole in the thinner end and propping it up to dry. Ready for firing. So quick and elegant.
|Next to a finished one.|
Here's a little video of the incense holder production: