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Ceramics In Your Home

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Ceramics In Your Home


ceramic2aCollectors passionate about contemporary designs are snapping up innovative ceramics says FUNKE OSAE-BROWN

Contemporary ceramics are glamorous, tactile and capable of adding unusual beauty and lustre to high-style interiors. Little wonder why it has become increasingly sought after. Some find it the designs and radiance irresistible, others enjoy the feel-good factor of owning a design which ages beautifully and the value of which could well increase.

As a result, top quality workmanship has been the hallmark of local crafters ever since ceramics came into prominence in the country since the 1950s. Today, local crafters are pushing the material much further by combining new technology with traditional craftsmanship which has result in vibrant, eye-catching designs for home decorations and exquisite utensils for the kitchen for every day use and enjoyment.

“we are now seeing more creative and interesting designs, especially from young but creative manufacturers,” says Sade Abiola of YATS Collection, an interior decoration outfit which showcases pieces ranging from late medieval to contemporary. “There is a lot of interest in ceramics aeons of years ago. In fact it was associated with the Victorian period in England. In Nigeria, many people fell in love with the unique designs when it was introduced into the country by the colonialists. In those days, mothers specially collect them keep them for safe-keeping their wardrobes because of the quality and value. But in recent times, people use ceramic for decoration in the home especially flower vases and the tiny pieces like breakfast set are use for decoration in the living room,” Abiola adds.

Abiola also observes that the Ceramics collection is one of the cornerstones of the Victoria and Albert Museum. The collection ranges from ancient Egyptian artefacts to contemporary studio pottery and industrially designed ceramics. The allure of age-long ceramics still tickle people’s fancy . The good numbers of ceramic wares that still maintain a space even in modern living tell more of the value those who appreciate the scintillating look of the wares place on them. The beauty and financial value are not just the attraction; some do collect ceramics as artwork and in doing so create a gallery of ceramic artefacts worthy of at least viewing by family members and very close friends.

It’s not just collectors passionate about contemporary design who are snapping up the latest pieces. “People with antique ceramic collections are buying contemporary English ceramic for the historical continuity as much as for sheer luxury,” says Abiola.

In every home where beauty is supreme, one would be surprised that the flower vases that complement the gatekeeper’s welcome at the entrance is made of wrought from exquisite baked clay. The beautiful decorations in the sitting room could be quite appealing because of the ceramic ware used in the decoration. The same could be said of the kitchen wares in most home.

The products seem to be at the service of those with some close-to-bad habits. Most beautifully decorated ashtrays in hotels and even at home are made of ceramics.

Caleb Asokwa, guest manager at Eko Hotel and Suites notes that beyond its beauty, ceramics is fire proof and is very easy to clean. So its safety and convenience are sustaining it in this era of innovation. At least a chain smoker will not burn down the hotel or his house by the mistake of his unquenched cigarette butt.

But most importantly, ceramics still finds its way into the heart of art collectors and some conscious collectors are on the lookout for new wares to adorn and beef-up their already rich home gallery. The presence of ceramic wares is also felt at some religious places that still adore their places of worship and sanctuaries with lustre of this beautiful man-made material. The fact that some altars, collection boxes, vestry and even walls wear ceramic designs on them means that the relevance of the age-long product is sustainable.

Rasheed Gbadamosi, an art statesman and art collector has a good number of ceramics works for the keeping.  He does not just collect any artwork he sees at an art shop or comes across at exhibitions. Beyond the money value, quality, ability to appeal and express thoughts of the maker or even the innate and burning feelings of the buyer, for him, are what make a work a must-buy for not just art enthusiast, but for those with the desire to buy and the ability to pay. “Even if the products seem to be rare, a good eye will search them and their makers out and buy.” The art collector beam enthusiastically.

The glitter of ceramic wares whether as art work, house ware, decoration and monument seems to last forever. “If you wake up any day and finds out that your beautiful ceramics collection is dirty, all you need do is to dust it up, place it back and enjoy its lustre once again.” Yemisi Shyllon , Nigeria ’s foremost art collector once said.

But he thinks not very many people are colleting them today because of availability, quality, and the many alternatives that are also as appealing as ceramics. It is no longer a mass market

While a collector enjoys his ceramics works, the artist that makes it grind and sweat it out in order to dish out appealing works for his many, but oftentimes, unknown patrons out there.

Malu Ikrie, a Yabatech trained artist that specialize on ceramics, says the process of beating materials, sieving and processing them into a mouldable form can only be done by a thorough and painstakingly fellow or else you let go for industrial machines which, according to him, are very expensive.

“A lot of process goes into ceramics and that is why the by-product is very alluring. But its convenience, portability and safety compensate its very   expensive price anywhere in the world.” The truth, according to him, is that the eye goes for what appeals to it and ceramics has that alluring appeal every beholder cannot resist. This has made the product to survive centuries and is still hopeful of being prominent in home decorations in many years to come and also finds its way in the gallery of  art collectors.

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