Talavera Sculpted Vases

Artist Luis Sottil’s creation of a three dimensional dialogue between nature and humankind has now taken place.

Sottil’s purpose was to find a new form of expression that would follow the Naturalismo philosophy of using only the earth’s natural resources, such as clay and mineral oxide pigments to give voice to the emotions of nature.

Talavera is the oldest, all natural, art form found in existence today that still complies with the original norms of painted earthenware of the 16th century.

Sottil had to confront one of the most difficult challenges since the creation of his own Naturalismo technique in order to use this medium for the creation of his sculptures. The world of Talavera had mostly been reserved for painting on flat surfaces made of natural clay. On rare occasions, platters and vases included designs with figures carved in high relief.

Sottil’s highly intricate creations have resulted in the world’s first collection of handmade earthenware sculptures executed by molding and carving each element of the composition with a pronounced degree of separation.

Once the molding and carving is finished, each piece undergoes a drying process, then it is fired for the first time to make it stone hard. The next step is to dip it in tin glaze and paint it.

Once the piece is painted with the only six mineral oxides used during this primitive process, it is fired for the second and last time so the colors fuse into one another. This creates a natural blending effect adding to the uniqueness and desirability of each piece. This elaborate process may take up to six months.

The first collection of Talavera sculptures, called ‘Roots of Harmony,’ will be a celebration of nature’s beauty and abundance. At the same time it invites the human spirit to coexist with nature in harmony.

The traditional blue and white designs of ancient Talavera painted on the outer surface of each piece are synchronized with Sottil’s molded interpretations of nature on the inside. This combination symbolizes the bond needed to sustain a harmonious balance with nature.

Official Talavera can only be produced in Puebla, Mexico. It is the only geographic region in the world where the unique mineral composition of the black and white clay, required to create each piece, can be found.

Puebla earned its denomination of origin just like France did for the champagne region. Each sculpture comes with a computerized chip validating its authenticity.

In addition, the international regulating council of Talavera has recognized the Naturalismo sculptures as original museum works of art.

Each piece is created at Uriarte, the oldest and most highly recognized producer of this art form, credited with making the world’s finest examples of Talavera. Their works of art can be found in collections around the world such as the Vatican and the royal palace of the king and queen of Spain, among many others.

Sottil’s unique Talavara pieces have been on display at one of Latin America’s most highly regarded museums: The Franz Myers Museum of Modern Art in Mexico City.