Clay

Potters, weavers, ceramicists, lathe workers

On Gran Canaria, producing pots and items from clay is a centuries-old craft profession that has survived to the present with few changes. The early Canary Islanders made high quality clay containers entirely by hand, but after the conquest of the island, in the late 15th century, the new settlers introduced turned pottery, bringing new types and sizes of pots, and decorations suited to the new society. European potters set up their workshops in the largest settlements, either in existing locations such as Gáldar, Telde and Agüimes, or in newly-built areas, such as the city of Las Palmas. At the same time, potters continued to make products entirely by hand, without the use of a lathe. Handmade pots were made by the original inhabitants of the island using traditional techniques, and also by the settlers, who used the methods they brought with them from their places of origin. In the 16th and 17th centuries, various pottery workshops were located in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Telde, Arucas and Moya. Over the centuries, lathe turning declined among Canary Islands potters, and from the 18th century, families of potters who made pieces entirely by hand became established in Hoya de Pineda, Lugarejos and Tunte.

In the new pottery settlements, women rather than men were the potters, taking over the task of making clay containers. The men had to combine their agricultural and livestock work with the tasks of gathering clay and firewood, and help prepare pieces for firing in the kiln. The women were in charge of selling their products all over the island, either for money or for goods produced in the areas where they travelled.

By the end of the 20th century, few of the traditional potters remained (Juliana, Rafaela, Panchito, Antoñita, Adolfina, Justo), but their work has slowly been taken up by a new generation of potters who work day by day to keep this ancestral profession alive.

Horario

Lunes a domingo de 10:30h a 17:00h

Teléfono

928 772 445

E-mail

faromaspalomas@fedac.org

Dirección

Pl. del Faro, 15,
35100 Maspalomas, Las Palmas