Veronique Mamigbola & Angeline Hountchonou (Benin, Africa)(Benin, Africa)
Veronique Bambigola and Angeline Hountchonou work in the ’Poterie a Mouzoungoudou’ in Benin, Africa, making traditional African ceramics.
During the week leading up to the Festival, Veronique and Angeline were busy making and drying pots for the weekend. Druing Saturday and Sunday, in addition to the stage demonstrations of their building techniques, they fired their prepared work in a traditional bonfire.
Traditional African pots, while maybe not as highly valued today as in the past, are not only beautiful but perfectly adapted for their use. The technology to make them does not require high firing or glazes. Indeed, the low firing produces two important qualities lacking in most high fired western products – porosity, allowing for transpiration and cooling of the pot’s contents; and the ability to withstand, without shattering, the uneven and rapid heating and cooling when the pottery is used to cook over an open fire.
With grateful thanks to Takeshi Yasuda for his advice on demonstrators; to Michel Gardelle & Louise Gardelle for invaluable help in making contacts in Benin; to Mike Eden for his initial help on the Benin project. The International Ceramics Festival gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Arts Council for Wales.