Sunday, December 27, 2009

Erin Kettenburg Pennsylvania German Sgraffito Plate


This authentic 18th/19th century redware plate hand-made by Erin Kettenburg. This plate measures 10 inches in diameter and is a spectacular example of quality, historical sgraffito work. Each piece is made of traditional hand-rolled, drape-molded red Pennsylvania clay and is decorated with basic period materials: yellow/white slip, various manganese, copper and iron oxide colorants and clear overglaze. (For safe handling, Erin does not use lead-based overglazes.) This plate utilizes a slightly crazed overglaze however it has not been highlighted with any premature darkening. As per tradition, backs are unglazed. Each piece is signed on the back. More information about Erin Kettenburg's redware: This redware pottery is being created in true historical tradition and is entirely hand-made.  Each plate is formed of red clay which is rolled by hand to appropriate thickness (no rolling mill is utilized) and shaped upon various hump or ‘drape’ molds.  A base coating of lightly-colored  slip is then applied and decorative elements are subsequently cut through the slip in the old Pennsylvania German sgraffito tradition.  Selected coloring agents are used and finally a clear overglaze is applied and fired which yields a very subtle, attractive ‘crazed’ surface.  The backs are signed and unglazed.  A wide variety of pieces are available ranging from the basic copper-green highlights to more elaborate multi-colored designs incorporating manganese and iron oxide.  Erin is working in a primitive folk-art style and each is entirely unique:  due to the entirely hand-made nature of these plates, no two will ever be identical!  As with true 18th and early 19th century work, the hand of the potter is quite evident in each.


Copy and photo supplied by Erin Kettenburg.

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