The ancient art of ceramics origins rise from the first stable agricultural settlements of Mesolithic and Neolithic times. They already understood the various production techniques of clay objects subjected by one or more firings
The term that distinguishes these ceramic products is derived from the Greek “karamus” meaning clay, vase. This term had arrived in the 19th century being put into circulation quite recently.
The diverse qualities of ceramics are classified according to clay experts for their; mixtures, coverings, and their techniques of fabrication:
– “RED CLAY“: called also Earthenware is an clay firing at 980°-1050° C, color after firing is pink, orange or red, the colors depends on how much iron oxide is present in the clay.
– MAJOLICA: is terracotta ( red clay or white clay biscuit) covered in white glaze which is then painted and decorated, (overglaze painting). For this reason, it is subject to a second firing, at the temperature of 930°-960°C.
– White Clay: is divided into two groups; soft and hard. It is characterized as a white mixture, for the presence of quartz, feldspar, and Kaolin. For soft earthenware, the firing is similar to that of the red clay for the hard earthenware the firing is 1150°C. White clay is used for painting underglaze (terracotta invetriata)
– GRES: Gres is a compact mixture. It is white or has color—it is extracted from the clay of sedimentary rock, rich in silice. It is divided into three groups: Klinker, Ball clay, and Fire clay. It is often utilized for floor tiles and sanitary ware firing temperature; 1250°-1400°C.
– PORCELAIN: Porcelain is a compact white mixture, the composition is Kaolin, quartz and feldspar bentonite. It is divided up into two groups; soft and hard. The first vitrify’s at 1220° which then reaches its translucently.
The colors are obtained by diverse minerals oxides. Shades of green are acquired with copper oxide, the yellows with iron oxide. The oxide of cobalt produces blue tones, and the oxide of manganese shades of brown.