Functional Handcrafted Pottery
Welcome to Halistra Pottery: makers of functional and colourful domestic earthenware. Visit the pottery studio on Scotland's beautiful Isle of Skye.
"A piece of coloured slipware can be so beautiful that it commands attention and demands to be handled. The seductive shine of the lead glaze enhances the colour and gives a subtlety, a richness and a depth of colour which no other glaze type achieves and which produces pottery which is essentially desirable."
"Forty or so years ago, the prevailing image of slipware was of poorly crafted, dreary and cheap tourist wares, but those with a special interest in British ceramic history have never ceased to recognise its value. During the last thirty years there has been a renaissance in slipware production with makers such as Clive Bowen, Mary Wandrausch and Victoria and Michael Eden at the forefront of this revival."
"I draw my inspiration from the countryware of the past, from the work of contemporary makers and from the subtle and ever-changing colours of the sea, croft and mountains of Skye. The techniques are inherited from the traditions of the past but the shapes and colours are contemporary, producing a marriage of old and new which, I hope, is irresistible."
"I use a terracotta earthenware clay for the body of the pot which is then dipped in or has a white liquid clay slip poured over it. The pots are bisque fired before being glazed and fired a second time. Both firings are in an electric kiln so that the firing is carefully controlled and the glazes are reliable. The glaze is a clear colourless lead sesquisilicate, coloured with cobalt or iron oxides to give the brilliant blue and orange colours. As the glaze melts, the colours often merge producing exciting and sometimes unexpected effects which always makes kiln opening an adventure. These glazes have been tested against current British and American lead release levels and are safe for use with food."
"My pottery is essentially functional and intended for everyday use. As a nation we seem to be obsessed with food, with T.V. chefs attaining the status of pop stars. How much more pleasure can we get from eating good food when it is cooked in, served from and eaten off pottery which itself is beautiful, enhances the food we serve and adds another dimension to the pleasure of eating."