.Ceramics and Pottery
Ceramic industry is one of the oldest industries in the world. The first ever-excavated ceramics objects belonging to 10 to 12 thousand years ago were explored in Zagros mountain range in Iran that indicates a long and shining history in it. The first sample ever discovered belongs to 8000 BC made without using a pottery wheel and furnace but heated beside fire. One of the most important characteristics of the pottery and ceramics in different regions of Iran is “the expressive and beautiful decorations” on them. These decorations in different parts of Iran are completely compatible with the people’s belief, culture and climate of those areas.
Exceptional and marvelous items were created in that era; decorating historical monuments and buildings inclusive of mosques in Isfahan and other Iranian towns.
Undoubtedly, one of the most ancient human arts is pottery which in many cases is used to define the age of the discovered ancient samples and, thus the age of civilizations. In many cases primitive man has made earthenware imitating figure of baskets made of three branches and in some other cases he would use those baskets as the mold of his earthenware.
In 3500 BC some simple pottery wheel was invented making a great revolution in pottery industry after which a variety of techniques as decoration, drawing, carving and relief on earthenware were invented. Pottery wheel, having been invented, enamel work made the most important revolution in pottery fields. The primary material of pottery is sort of mud composed of different kinds of earths with water. The applied earths are divided into two main sorts as Kaolin and white earth for ceramic productions and the secondary earth as clay is used to make earthenware.
The pottery productions are produced through different methods as pressing, sheeting, tubing, and molding methods and another method using a pottery wheel out of which the pressing, sheeting and tubing methods need more skill and talent of the artist while in the methods using a pottery wheel or grout or molding method the grout is poured into molds to form a ceramic work. Here it should be mentioned that half of the earthenware and ceramics are heated in the furnaces at 950 to 1000 centigrade. The production in this process is called biscuit which is used for enameling and arraying.
The color and quality of Iranian tiles and ceramics are so unique that they have resisted hard climatic and erosive conditions of Iran for centuries. “Sultanabad” and “Lajvardina” are two types of pottery.