Sunday, November 18, 2012

Chamorro Pottery Attempt Two - Plate

My first attempt at reproducing ancient Chamorro pottery may be been a little too ambitious. I realize like with so many things in life it is important to learn to walk before trying to run.  
Evidence shows that pottery came in a variety of shapes and sizes from oval and globe-like, conical as in my first attempt and even flat.
Our ancient ancestors probably used these plates the the same way we use flat ceramic-ware today, for cooking and serving food. Some archeologists have even suggested that flat pottery may have been used to carry fire.


The rim of this plate is raised and has a simple pressed design similar to the style seen on pottery sherds found in the Marianas. The center of the plate has a pandanas matt impression.
EDIT: This was formed by hand without the use of a pottery wheel. When I took the plate in to be fired the good people there did not believe this was done without a wheel. Admittedly it would be easier, faster even, to do this on a pottery wheel but the idea behind reproducing the pottery is to also try to reproduce the way it was formed.
That of course begs the question of why don't I use clay from Guam or harden the clay using fire, why use modern clay and kiln... The simple answers are, with living on the mainland I cannot get or produce clay from materials found in the Marianas. As far fire hardening the clay, I don't have the means to do that where I currently live. 

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