Pottery: Egypt's surprise new art craze
Darb 1718 is preparing for an intensive workshop on the art of ceramics, which will start on 6 March. The workshop has a rigorous schedule divided into two parts: theoretical and practical. The sessions are led by artist Abd El Hakim Sayed Abd El Hakim, who is the Director of Foustat Traditional Crafts Centre and the Cultural Development Fund at the Ministry of Culture.
The 15-day workshop will teach the participants the essential basics of ceramics and pottery. In addition to mastering modelling, the participants will also be taught how to trace geometrical patterns and painting and will learn all there is to know about methods of firing and different ways of colouring.
Unlike most ceramics workshops, which usually focus only on colouring ceramics, this one is very technical in nature. Participants will emerge more knowledgeable of the art and capable of mastering it after only a little practice.
Abd El Hakim said the art of ceramics was starting to be more popular: “Ceramics, as an art is really starting to pick up among the public. There are a lot of people interested [in training] but the problem is with finding the right place or work space. Hopefully, this workshop will be the starting point.”
“Usually, people who come to this workshop should be interested in ceramics and willing to work on it,” said Abd El Hakim. When asked about what people should expect from the workshop, he said: “They will learn the principals of ceramics and how to create patterns, as well as a small part of the history [of the art of ceramics]. They will go through the entire process of creation and at the end they will make a piece that will show how much they learnt.”
Abd El Hakim also expounded on the fact that participants will be able to consult him after the workshop is over. “Afterwards, they can use Darb’s workshop or we can help whoever is interested in opening their own. We will also guide them and provide them with the necessary artistic experience,” he said.
The workshop contains 15 sessions over a two-month period. Participants will be trained theoretically first, after which they will begin their practical training. The workshop costs EGP 850 and confirmation of attendance requires a deposit.
By Thoraia Abou Bakr