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ID number:  BIRRC-D0154(1)
Institution:  Research and Cultural Collections
Named collection:  Danford Collection of West African Art and Artefacts
Artist / Maker:  Nigerian Pottery Training Centre
Title / Object name:  Two glazed wine flasks
Object type:  Ceramic
Place made:  Abuja, N. Nigeria
Culture:  Nigerian
Materials:  Stoneware
Measurements:  (1) 30 x 62 cm (2) 32 x 70 cm
BIRRC-D0154.jpg

(1) Glazed wine flask with screw stopper and pulled handle. Feldspathic reduction glaze over a laterite iron-rich slip, running to greenish black. Impressed seal marks at the base of the handle 'LH: PKG. RH' (Abuja), in ajami characters.


Made at the Pottery Training Centre under the tutelage of Michael Cardew in the late 1950s, possibly thrown by Peter Gboko, a Cardew trainee. These pots, freely based on 'butan salla' (hausa) ablution flasks, were made by Nigerian throwers at the Abuja Pottery training centre established and developed by Michael Cardew between 1952 -65, and continuing to operate after Cardew's retirement. While introducing Anglo-Japanese throwing, firing and glazing techniques Cardew encouraged his Nigerian potters to modify indigenous hand-built forms in terms of throwing. Many of his trainees came from village cultures with rich pot-making traditions e.g. Ladi Kwali came from the Gbari potmaking village of Kwali (S. of Abuja). Abuja ceramic ware was made from indigenous clays and minerals, some found locally and some like Koalin from the Bauclu plateau or limestone from near Sokoto. They were fired in a wood-fired down draught Kiln to stoneware temperatures (around 1280oc). Iron rich reduction glazes are due to the high iron content of local clays and to the use of laterite slip under a feldspar, lime, kaolin glaze.

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