What is Polish pottery?
The art of Polish pottery dates to the 14th century when a layer of ceramic clay was discovered in the vicinity of Bolesławiec. Early pottery featured white patterns with a brown glaze, and quickly became a desired commodity in Europe and royal courts. By the 19th century, the popularity led to an incorporation of vibrant stamped designs in a wider variety of colors. A school was founded for potters and artists, and now there are many factories spanning through Bolesławiec that export their products across the globe.
How is it made?
All pieces are formed and decorated manually using a stamp method as well as brush painting. After the pottery is formed and dried it undergoes preliminary firing at 850°C. The resulting biscuit products are painted with ceramic paint and then glazed and fired at 1250°C. Decorations incorporate an underglaze method, preventing designs from rubbing-off and protecting them from damage.
The high firing temperature not only gives products their beautiful, shiny glaze but makes them durable as well. The products can be used for oven baking and they are dishwasher and microwave safe. They also tolerate low temperatures very well, which makes them suitable for storing food in refrigerators and freezers. All materials are environmentally friendly, and both lead and cadmium free for quality and safety.
Zaklady Ceramiczne is one of the largest manufacturers of hand-crafted and hand-decorated tableware pottery, using a time-honored stamping technique. Products are renowned for their beautiful hand-finish, original style and high practicality. Their unique design, drawing from a several-hundred-year tradition of Polish, Czech and German pottery making, is a distinct stylistic canon, known in German as Bunzlauer Geschirr.
Zaklady's "stamping" technique for decorating pottery is highly recognized — patterns in the form of twigs, flowers, birds and other graphic elements are applied to vessels manually with specially prepared stamps. The resulting hand-decorated line of table and kitchenware offers a unique alternative to mass produced products.
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"Artistic Ceramics" or "Ceramika" was born in 1950. Ceramika set out to produce sophisticated, world-recognized patterns that combine time-honored, traditional forms with the advances of modern applied art. Today, the co-op produces 600 forms and 2,500 ornamental patterns — a strong indicator for the company's potential.
The artistic value of the pottery is matched by the superior quality which has brought Ceramika many prestigious awards, medals and recognitions at national and international levels. Accolades include: 'Honorary Prize of the President of the City of Boleslawiec 2018', 'Bronze Cross of Merit of the President of the republic of Poland 2017', Oscar Polish Cooperative Society 2016'.
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In 2003, Ewa Walczak turned her passion and love for regional products into a business in her hometown of Boleslawiec, Poland. From this inspired venture Ceramika Artystyczna Vena, a family company, was born.
Since the company was established, it has balanced a rich tradition of pottery-making while introducing contemporary styles. New motifs, created by the owner herself, have won recognition among both Polish and foreign customers and the regional handicraft nature of Vena's products has been confirmed by certificates from the Warsaw National Artistic and Ethnographic Commission.
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WR CERAMIKA S.C. J.K. Rutyna is a workshop with over 44 years of experience in the ceramic industry (since 1978). Today the company specializes in production of tableware, tea and coffee sets, vases, mugs and other types of ceramic pottery. Their signature is unique and distinct floral patterns.
At present almost all their production is exported to the USA, Germany, England and Italy. Keeping in mind that the quality of the factories products is a key factor in their company's reputation, they continually strive to improve the quality of products at each stage of the production cycle.
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For over 25 years, the "Manufaktura" Sp. J. Smoleński & Zwierz Stone Pottery Factory in Bolesławiec has promoted Bolesławiec pottery round the world. Manual manufacturing based on a traditional technology on the one hand and openness to new decorative elements and co-operation with artists on the other hand make "Manufaktura"a trend-setter viewed as one of the most important producers of Bolesławiec pottery.
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ANDY ceramics are created by people gathered in a family factory, in a place where real works of art are created. They are distinguished by enormous commitment and devotion to artistic work. The essence of ceramic products is the combination of the elements fire, water and clay - and the constant work of human hands. They produce artistic ceramics, which is the hallmark of the city of Bolesławiec. Polish pottery retains its unique character thanks to this process which is consistent with tradition and has been reliable for hundreds of years.
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Ceramica Artystyczna Wiza was started in 1963 by Stanislaw Wiza. Over the years, their dedication to the craft, attention to detail, and creative team of over 100 artists have supplied homes all over with heirloom quality pieces.
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Ceramika Bolesławiecka Kalich was founded in 2001 by Jacek Kalich and his wife Weronika after becoming enamored with the art and tradition in hand crafted ceramics. A growth in business led them to Bolesławiec where they settled in a historical factory. Now they boast over 600 different forms of ceramic products in a variety of distinct patterns.
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Over 4000 glassblowers are employed by Glassworks to create custom works of art. They specialize in decorative glasses such as vases, candleholders, and hurricane design as well as tabletop products such as tumblers, jugs, stemware, and bowls. Each piece is created by hand-and no two pieces are exactly alike!