LUSTREWARE FROM SPAIN

A Collection of Hispano-Moresque Ceramics
Exhibition image

The Moorish potters of Medieval Spain, who were responsible for the thirteen vessels in this exhibition, were in high demand during the late Middle Ages. Their precious, brilliantly decorated ceramics, a class of pottery commonly described today with the terms ‘Hispano-Moresque’ and ‘lustreware’, enjoyed international renown. Two things were fundamental to the appeal of Hispano-Moresque ceramics in this period. The first was the unique language of their decoration – a remarkable hybrid of gothic elements, floral motifs and the occasional Christian inscription or emblem, with the dynamic pattern-making of the Islamic world. The second was their intensely exotic appearance. Their surfaces were meticulously embellished by hand using brushes loaded with a vivid blue pigment obtained by crushing cobalt glass, and then coated again with an extraordinary, lustrous sheen that flashes across the surfaces of most Hispano-Moresque ceramics like an iridescent fire. This almost alchemical effect is known as copper lustre, and is produced by applying a copper oxide mixture over the already-fired tin- and cobalt-based glazes before heating the ceramic a third time at low temperature in a kiln starved of oxygen. It is unclear exactly when the technique reached Valencia and its satellite towns of Paterna and Manises on Spain’s eastern seaboard, but thanks to the migration of Muslim potters north from the Nasrid court in Málaga over the course of the fourteenth century it became the epicenter of European production. In short, this complex, layered artform with a hybrid identity was created from the intermingling of Muslim and Christian cultures and containing centuries of human movement, struggle, and artistic invention in its decoration.

15 April - 7 May 2021
Play
Pause

View more

Medieval Women Subjects and Makers of Art

Sam Fogg
25 February - 31 March 2021

London Art Week Winter 2020

27 November - 11 December 2020

Architecture & Ornament

Sam Fogg
22 October - 19 November 2020

Frieze Masters 2020

Sam Fogg
9 - 16 October 2020

Medieval Faces

Sam Fogg
3 - 10 July 2020

TEFAF Maastricht

MECC Maastricht
5 - 15 March 2020

Gothic Spirit Medieval Art from Europe

Luhring Augustine
25 January - 7 March 2020

Retablos

1 December 2019 - 7 February 2020

Medieval and Renaissance Stained Glass: 1250 - 1550

Sam Fogg
26 September - 25 October 2019

Frieze Masters

Regent's Park
3 - 6 October 2019

Medieval Art in England

Sam Fogg
27 June - 26 July 2019

TEFAF Maastricht

MECC Maastricht
14 - 24 March 2019

Seven Objects, Seven Days Art from the Middle Ages

Sam Fogg
30 November - 7 December 2018

Get updates about exhibitions, art fairs and events

Shopping Bag

Close
No items found
Close
Close
Close
Search
Sam Fogg
Art of the Middle Ages