What is Pottery Art? Stages of history and pottery making

Pottery plays an important role, both aesthetically and functionally. On the one hand, handmade pots are preferred, especially for decorative use. Because they are durable, aesthetically pleasing and healthy, pots are still considered a popular choice today. In the section below, we have collected detailed information about the art of pottery for you.

What is Pottery Art?

Pottery art is a branch of art that has been widely used in many societies throughout history and is an important part of cultures. While it is not known exactly when pottery made from clay was first used, it is known that they have been around since the earliest periods of history.

Pottery art is a branch of art that uses natural materials such as earth, clay and the like. These materials are processed in different ways into pots in different shapes. Two main techniques are used, handmade and mass production.

Handmade pottery is completely handmade and each may have different characteristics from the other. For this reason, handmade pots are preferred, especially for decorative purposes. Mass-produced pots, on the other hand, are produced in factories and are usually cheaper.

It occupies an important place in many cultures. For example, in Turkish culture, pottery is an indispensable part of traditional breakfast tables. During the Ottoman period, pots were also important tools for transporting and storing water. Likewise, in other cultures, pottery has different purposes.

Pottery Art History

Pottery art

Pottery art is one of the oldest branches of art in human history. Throughout history, the use and production of pottery took place in different ways in different cultures and periods. However, they have one thing in common: pottery played an important role in people’s daily lives.

It is not known exactly when the pottery was first used. However, in early history, people used pottery to transport, boil, and store water and other liquids. The earliest pottery samples have been found in the Middle East and Egypt. These examples date back to 6000 BC.

In ancient times, the art of pottery held an important place in various cultures. For example, in Egypt and Mesopotamia, pottery was offered to the gods, used to bury the dead, and used in everyday life. Likewise, he contributed to the development of other arts such as pottery, ceramics and sculpture in ancient Greece and Rome.

During the Middle Ages, the art of pottery was also widely used in Europe. During this period, pottery was often used as a substitute for metal and glassware. In Islamic culture, pottery is an important part of ceramic art. In Islamic culture, pottery is often decorated with geometric and floral designs.

With the New Age period, pottery continued to develop in Europe and other regions. During this period, pottery in Europe began to be regarded as a work of art. The Renaissance period is considered the golden age of pottery art in Europe. During this period, pottery, works made by Italian masters, attracted a lot of attention in Europe.

Types of pottery art

Pottery art

The art of pottery has evolved in many different cultures and regions. Therefore, the varieties of pottery art are also quite numerous. Here are some basic varieties of pottery art:

Traditional pottery

Traditional pottery is still a common method around the world. In this method, the clay is shaped by hand and then baked in the sun or in the oven. Traditional pots are usually designed for everyday use and have a simple design.


Ceramics is another type of pottery art. Ceramic is a hard and durable material that is created by baking clay. Ceramics are produced for decorative and utility purposes. For example, it can be used in many different fields, such as ceramic pots, sculptures and decorative objects.


Porcelain is a thin and transparent type of pottery. It is made from a mixture of materials such as porcelain, kaolin, feldspar and quartz. Porcelain is usually white or cream in color and may have patterns or embellishments. Porcelain is used for decorative and utility purposes.


Rakugaki is a kind of traditional Japanese pottery. In this method, it is cooked in the sun or in the oven. Rakugaki pots are generally designed for everyday use and have a simple design. However, this pottery has a distinctive aesthetic and is an important part of Japanese art.


Majolika is a type of Italian pottery. In this method, the clay is shaped by hand and then baked in the oven. Colored glazes are then applied and fired again. Majolica pottery is often brightly colored and may have patterns or embellishments. These pots are used for decorative purposes.

How do you make pottery art?

Pottery art

Making pottery can be an enjoyable experience for artisans and hobby clay workers. To create pottery art, different materials and basic steps are required. Here are step-by-step tips for making pottery art:

1. Prepare the ingredients

Materials needed to make pottery include clay, pottery wheels, water, pottery tools (important tools include pencil, wire, spatula), and glaze (optional).

2. Prepare the clay

To prepare the clay, mix the powdered clay with water and knead into a dough. Let your clay, which you have prepared for use, rest for a few hours.

3. Prepare the potter’s wheel

The potter’s wheel is one of the most important tools in making pottery art. To prepare the potter’s wheel, make a clay center on the wheel. Then, with your fingers on the clay, make a pot shape.

4. Shape it

The shaping process is one of the most important steps in making pottery art. You can make many different objects like bowls, plates, vases by molding the clay dough on the wheel. Be sure to wet your hands while shaping so they can glide gently over the clay.

5. Let dry

Let your molded pots dry. The drying time may vary depending on the size and thickness of the pot. The average period is a few days or a week.

6. Apply glaze

Glaze is a coating that gives the pottery a colorful and shiny appearance. To apply glaze, clean your dried pot and cover it with a layer of glaze. Then place in the oven and heat to about 200°C.

7. Put in the oven

Place your pots in the oven and bake at a temperature of about 850-900°C.

Pottery art tips

Pottery art

Clay is thoroughly kneaded. Forming is done in different ways. Modeling, one of the forms of molding such as molding, turning and modeling, is made by shaping the dough by hand or with primitive tools. Only simple items can be made using the casting method. The turning method takes place using the potter’s wheel.

The dough placed on the wheel is formed into the desired shape with the fingers while the wheel rotates. Drying takes place in several stages. The handles of the pot are attached after the dough has dried. After drying, the sanded pottery is painted and decorated. Then the resin is coated with a substance such as varnish that prevents the water from penetrating. The pottery that is fired as the last process is ready for use.

What materials is pottery made with?

Basic materials used to make pottery include clay, pottery wheels, pottery tools, and glaze. Clay is the main material of pottery objects. A potter’s wheel is a tool used to shape pottery objects. Pottery tools are used during the molding process. Glaze is a coating used to give pottery a colorful and bright appearance.

What techniques are used to make pottery?

The basic techniques used to create pottery art include hand molding, forming a pottery wheel, casting, and using molds. Hand molding is one of the most basic techniques and is done by shaping pottery dough by hand. Shaping on the potter’s wheel is done by shaping the pottery dough as it is rotated on the potter’s wheel. Pouring and shaping is done by pouring and shaping the pottery dough into moulds.

Do you need special skills to make pottery art?

No special skill is needed to make pottery art, but it does require dexterity and patience. It can be difficult at first, but with trial and error you can master pottery over time.

Why is pottery art important?

The art of pottery enables the production of objects that people have used in their daily lives for thousands of years. In addition, earthenware works of art with their aesthetic and functional characteristics have a cultural and artistic value. Therefore, the art of pottery plays an important role in improving people’s quality of life.

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