Over the centuries, ceramic artists constantly refined their work through seeing the very best qualities attained by those who had preceded them. Passed from artist to artist through the language of the pottery itself, it was as if the highly decorative designs, unique tin and lead glazes, stunning colors and shapes, whispered secrets from the earliest masters. Beneath the glittering snow-caps atop the ancient volcanoes that surround Puebla, Mexico, Talavera pottery took residence in the 16th century.
Milky-white glazes softly mimicked the clouds that drifted from volcanic peaks; cobalt blues brought echoes of cherished Chinese porcelains and Moorish tiles. Natural pigments of yellow, green, orange and mauve blended in balanced fashion, as they were painted on the special clay that settled below the sun-washed hillsides around Puebla. After being pulled from The Valley of the Angels, this unique clay was delicately thrown on the potter’s wheel and carefully dried. As a sign of its quality, each piece was required to ring like a bell when gently tapped after the first firing. Perhaps it was simply singing both encouragement and praise to the master potters who perfected this art form. There is no other earthen ware like it in the world.