A View of Mesopotamian Ceramics

Sir Leonard Woolley

Ur - Sir Leonard Woolley - 1946 - cover

Cover – Ur – Sir Leonard Woolley – 1946

In describing what is illustrated before us, Sir Leonard stresses the serial nature of ceramic production. From his comments on Plate 1 Pottery of the Al ‘Ubaid Period, we learn of his astonishment of the craftsmanship of the work not-produced on a wheel:

The pottery is astonishingly good, and the walls are sometimes of almost egg-shell thinness. The body clay was covered with a light slip or wash of white, and the painted decoration was applied before firing. […] Later on the use of stone or metal for luxury vessels killed pottery-making as an art, and the dull mass-produced wares of the potters of the historic ages have no merit other than utility.

I like the convergence of history and aesthetics in such a compact space. Awakens the imagination to seek out those more utilitarian pots and to judge their merit.

And so for day 2478

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