Roadside Pottery in Agra

This small roadside pottery is on the outskirts of Agra in India, on the Fatehpur Sitri road. My son and daughter-in-law stopped to investigate it whilst on honeymoon. The potters were throwing Diwali lamps and decorating small pouring vessels.



The thrower is throwing small Diwali lamps ‘off the hump’ on a momentum wheel in the shade. The products are spread out in the sun to dry quickly. Another wheel is off its bearing to the left. The potter in the foreground is painting in white on lamps and small pieces that have already been fired. You might assume seeing the pots alone that the decoration is white slip but clearly not. Ben said he was not able to ask about that or about firing because no one spoke English well enough. HE couldn’t see where firing was being done, although it must have been very close by. IMG_2565.JPGIMG_2611One of the small pouring vessels. You can see how soft-fired they are and how powdery the white paint is. The whole thing is so low-fired that you can scratch into it with a finger nail. You see sherds of stuff like this when excavating on Roman archaeological sites in the UK. 2000 years in damp soil and they are like cheese – your trowel goes right through them leaving a coloured arc on the ground.



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