TILT︎︎︎ wheelthrown set of greyware
plant pots in 3 sizes


TILT - a wheelthrown set of grayware plant pots in 3 sizes.
Objects designed as a part of a research on polish grayware (siwaki), conducted in Czarna Wieś Kościelna.

    Grayware is a prehistoric firing technique which was popularised in Poland in XIII and XIV century. During several visits to Paweł Piechowski’s workshop we were able to get to know the details of the technique used by generations of potters in that region. Gosia being born in Suwałki and having her grandmother in a nearby city of Czarna Białostocka was already familiar with Paweł and other potters from Czarna Wieś Kościelna. I was the one gasping in astonishment at every anecdote and piece of information recieved. We were introduced to the tools and equipment involved in the making of the gray pottery, including an impressively large, entirely hand-built kiln. Today, there is only handful of Polish potters that are still manufacturing siwaki.  Vessels made by those potters are usually bearing a strong resemblance to the aesthetics of the past and being sold at craft fairs as a local souvenirs. Czarna Wieś Kościelna and Medynia Głogowska are places in which one can still see dark smoke coming from the coniferous wood being fired in a traditional kiln.

Design process
    Our aim was to escape antiquated aesthetics and create a modern, functional object, that highlights properties of clay. That’s how Tilt  collection was born. We kept in mind that we need to come up with a design that is suitable to be manufactured on a pottery wheel. Since we were also focusing on the breathable properties of the material, plant pots came to mind.  Each pot size is assigned with a specific tilt of the form. Joined together, the angular sides are creating a rythm. Each pot has a drainage is accompanied by a saucer that gathers an excess water.
Pots come in 3 sizes:
Small /  H:11cm, D:12cm
Medium /  H:20cm, D:14cm
Large / H:26cm, D: 26cm
Unique, dark color of the pots highlights lively greenery of the plants, bringing this ancient technique to the contemporary interior. 

Every object is being wheelthrown, carefully dried and burnished. Than fired in a traditional kiln, using coniferous wood, usually pine. That type of wood, due to being very resinous, creates the desired smoke intensity which is crucial to the process. After reaching the apropriate temperature inside the kiln, reduction process begins with restricing the flow of incoming air by covering the holes situated at the top part of the kiln. In reduction firings, ferric oxides (Fe2o3) become ferro-ferric (Fe3o4) oxide or ferrous oxide (FeO) and convert ceramic vessels to a deep, dark, graphite-like, silverish hue. Each object is different from the other.  Appearances vary depending on the placement of the object inside the kiln (closer or further from the source of heat), type of clay and wood used during the fring and if the vessls were touching each other. Loading the kiln, firing and cooling process takes up to a week. Temperature of the kiln during the firing is assesed by thermometer but also, very importantly, by the trained eye of the pottery master.

The gray firing at Paweł’s pottery workshop takes place only twice or three times a year.

This project is a part of a collection of objects prototyped within an interdisciplinary research & development project titled “Crafting relationships between objects, created using various manufacturing technologies and artistic techniques, shaping the interior landscape“ / “Kształtowanie wzajemnych relacji obiektów użytkowych realizowanych w oparciu o różne technologie wytwarzania i techniki artystyczne budujących wspólnie krajobraz wnętrza mieszkalnego”, carried out and commisioned by University of Arts in Poznań (UAP).

Designed by Magda Jugo & Małgorzata Paruch-Piotrowska
Made by Paweł Piechowski

 @maga.yugo ︎