The Dana Pottery Community, Auroville, Part 1 (Incense Holders)

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.
Nice swish.

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: