Our video for the day takes us to El Nazla in Fayoum, the so-called “Valley of the Potters.” The home of one of the oldest clay traditions on the planet, anthropologists believe the techniques you see in this video pre-date the invention of the potter’s wheel. A palpable sense of age comes off this film in waves. We see the potters at work, crafting vases with speed and grace. They use a shallow depression in the ground and a few simple tools to shape the works. Filmed by Seif el Din Khaled, the awe of the piece is increased with poetic narration by Mohannad Haj. Editing for the video was done by Seif el Din Khaled and Ahmed Safy el-Din.
Our fondness and respect for what we see here is accompanied by a sense of comfort. It feels good seeing an ancient clay community still thriving in 2016. It feels like job security.
Love (not quite) contemporary ceramic art + design? Let us know in the comments.