Ceramics Cu 

Ceramics Cu, is a collection of pieces created in ceramics and copper with an innovative technique where, as a sort of alchemy, each piece is transformed into a new object in which colors and lines that ornate it emerges in an absolutely unique way through the firing process.
Thanks to the PET Lamp project, the studio has been specializing in the world of basketry, thus when entering a ceramic project, the team have inevitably transferred some of their technological findings.

Ceramics Cu is a ceramics project where clay is modelled and intervened with copper. The project arises from the fusion of the most ancestral crafts: basketry and ceramics.

Between 13,000 and 5,000 years ago, during the Neolithic periods, man ceased being a nomad and began to live in settled, socially-organized communities. In order to develop this new way of life, people learned how to make fabrics with simple looms, baskets and ceramic vases that allowed them to store food.
There are vestiges of pieces of pottery of the Neolithic Age showing that the clay had been molded round a basket structure, that show the interrelation between those new crafts.
In this new project we wanted to return to those first experiments that mix different craft techniques by joining materials that have accompanied man from its origins such as mud, copper and silica.
As a way of a contemporary analogy, we have developed a mesh fabric that will leave its mark on the ceramic when fired, marking the vases with mechanical drawings from the industrial process of the fabric production.

Ceramics Cu Making of

The project has been developed in two different phases:

We start with a more traditional first phase with a strong research and experimentation component in which vases with essential shapes have been molded by hand using an industrial copper mesh as a container. In the firing process, as a sort of alchemy color and lines emerge decorating in a unique way each vase.
This first phase has been developed in collaboration with the Escuela de Arte Francisco Alcántara.Cerámica, Madrid.

In a second phase focused on developing a serial production, the copper is applied using a circular weaving textile machine especially modified to be able to weave using variables of height, turn, speed, thickness of copper wire and type of knot.
In this way, abstract patterns are generated, that when applied to the ceramic and after the firing process, leave a pattern between chaos and order. In addition, silica turns the ceramic impermeable while becoming deep green in contact with the copper. Each of the different phases of the process leaves its mark on the final piece.

From an industrial design perspective, we didn’t want to involve ourselves in the manual drawing of each of the pieces, but in the design of a machine able to weave around the vase based on repetition and rhythms. In this way we achieved the serial production of unique pieces with a high degree of ornamentation, presenting the possibilities of drawing generated through mechanical instructions and electricity.

Ceramics Cu Product

The first Ceramics Cu collection is composed of a series of straight vases with cylinder format produced in four different sizes: small, medium, large and extralarge.

Studio photos by Studio Alvaro Catalán de Ocón.

Ceramics Cu Details

Vase S (ø: 16 ; H: 15 cm)
Vase M (ø: 17 ; H: 21 cm)
Vase L (ø: 18 ; H: 34 cm)
Vase XL Special edition (ø: 20 ; H: 45 cm)

Technical specifications
Waterproof inner glazing.
Weight: 1 kg, 1.5 kg, 2.7 kg and 3 kg.

Ceramics, Copper, Silica

Special thanks to:
Escuela de Arte Francisco Alcántara.Cerámica, Madrid. and Cerámica Artística San Ginés, Talavera 


© Alvaro Catalán de Ocón