Demystifying Pottery Myths

September 11, 2008
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Like anything that’s been around for thousands of years, the combination of science and art that is pottery has built up an enormous amount of folklore and superstitions. Jeff Zamek separates fact from fiction.



Like anything that’s been around for thousands of years, the combination of science and art that is pottery has built up an enormous amount of folklore and superstitions. “Without an understanding of how ceramic materials react in the firing process, a rote set of procedures was the best course to follow,” writes Jeff Zamek. “If an apprentice potter changed one variable, he risked losing a whole kiln load of pottery. The uncertainty of results often called for reassuring myths and dogma.”

Jeff tackled Pottery Myths in the March 2008 issue of PPP. In the article, he discusses myths related to economic considerations, the do-it-yourself mentality, frozen clays and glazes, slow drying, test kilns, pyrometric cones, and much, much more. A link to the full article is below.

What myths have you encountered in your pottery adventures? Do you follow any superstitious processes that you know are based on myth? Please share your experiences by posting a comment below.

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