RetortodelAlfarero's Shop Announcement

Retorto del Alfarero is Spanish for The Potter's Retort.

But "retort", not only in the sense of a reply. Retort is the name (familiar from chemistry labs) given by ancient Alchemists to vessels they used to perform "experiments" that sought to turn base elements into gold.

In recent times, Alchemy has been understood less as a pseudo-science and more as an esoteric metaphor for the journey of the soul's transformation, psychologically, as it suffers through the vicissitudes of its earthly journey.

The creation of every ceramic vessel reflects this "alchemical" process and can be seen as a metaphor for transformation itself-- each pot travels through a process-- from wet, plastic clay through the pressures of shaping and setting into bone-dry fragility before being fired into a sturdier "bisque" ware; then once glazed and decorated, it is "vitrified" at even higher temperatures and more time in the kiln.

Additionally, precious metal "lusters" are sometimes applied and the pot is re-fired. In the Japanese practice of "Kintsugi" (golden joinery), cracks in broken ceramic vessels are actually mended with gold. By bringing attention to the object's "damage", its history is given value, and there is acknowledgment that it is the conscious suffering of our broken places that brings the most meaning to our lives.

When finally cool to the touch, after all of its trials by fire, hopefully the vessel has achieved a proper degree of beauty, form and purpose-- an object that is both a pleasure to look at and to handle and use-- the closest thing to eternal that humans have produced. Archaeologically speaking, of course.

Retorto del Alfarero offers unusual, "transformational vessels" that are visually alluring and functional. Each one-of-a-kind object reminds us that we too, are in the process of being refined, ourselves-- forged by the fires of our history and life experience into more graceful, valuable and purposeful "vessels,” all of us individual and entirely unique.


This shop accepts Etsy Gift Cards.