Designer : Anton Alvarez (Sweden-Chile) & Craftsmen : Zhong-Zheng Chen and Chi-Li Hsiao (Taiwan) & Clay+art & craft co
Alvarez was inspired by the forms and symbols, as well as the handmade process that has been kept alive at Koji pottery thanks to the factory and to the museum. He has created four different shapes of contemporary vases revisiting the classical forms of the traditional Koji bestiary made of dragons, elephants, and tigers… The fauna and flora taken from the temple language and iconography have definitively been his source of inspiration. Modelled, cut and deformed to slightly become both decorative and functional pieces, his vases are freestanding and find their own visual and physical balance while modelling the clay before drying and firing it.
Alvarez has chosen to spray the glaze on his pieces and fire them at high temperatures, which gives them a very colourful glossy and unexpected look. This dynamic process of spraying on the vases is quite typical of Alvarez who wants to go beyond the ordinary in order to reach more random and surprising surface effects.
The New Koji final prototypes
- Context of Koji Pottery
The Chiayi county is hosting this colorful Koji Pottery that the Japanese refer to as ‘Chiayi Pottery’ knowing that all the masters learn their techniques applied to the temples in this region of Taiwan. The glazed pottery was mainly used for wall decorations and sculptures inside or outside the temples, especially on the rooftops to represent the gods and symbols.