Creating and firing a glaze of exploding glass atoms that covers a porcelain vessel has endless, enticing possibilities of beauty.

Crystalline Glazing – a brief description

Crystal Glazed Porcelain Pottery is a unique approach to the glazing of high fired porcelain pottery. Crystal glazing is one of the oldest art forms of clay glazing. It is also Piera Kllanxhja’s most passionate art medium.

Creating and firing a glaze of exploding glass atoms that covers a porcelain vessel has endless, enticing possibilities of beauty.

The exploding crystals of glass that are made during the high heating portion of the firing remain a frozen form of glass that envelopes the porcelain vase. The actual firing of the crystal glaze involves a complex combination of firing, timing, & glaze making.

There is the need for many different temperatures to be reached and held at various different times during high firing. The high firing, its temperatures and holding times, are one of the sciences/mysteries behind the making of these exploding atoms of glass crystals, which are formed and frozen in the glaze on the pot.

It is a magical mix of the materials in the glaze, the heat, and timing that create these beautiful frozen atoms of glass crystals on the porcelain pot.

It is a very unique, beautiful, multi dimensional art form.

Discovering and embracing this art form

View from Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu, NM

I discovered the art of creating crystal glazing porcelain pottery at Ghost Ranch, a spiritual and artist retreat in in Abiquiu New Mexico (which by the way was one of the last residences of Georiga Totto O’Keefe). What lead me to a strong curiosity was the crystal glazed Oriental pottery created in 1100 AD in Asia that I saw growing up at the Metropolitan Museum of Fine Art in NYC.

I was captivated by its fascinating beauty, and the how of its’ creation. This fascinating science was invented in the Eastern world (Asian) at least 1500 years ago.

The combination of the creative art of throwing various porcelain shapes on a potter wheels, and then science and luck all play a role in the art of making Crystal Glazed Porcelain pottery.

Inside the kiln – the process of crystal glazing

Crystal glaze is a liquid mixture of exact amounts of various chemicals,which, when applied to the bisque pot(once fired), the glaze, which is in liquid form, matures on the naked clay pot becoming a glass covering. The high heat & glaze gives the clay, strength and stability, for clay( especially porcelain) is very fragile without a glaze.

During a high firing, the Kiln reaches temperatures of 2220 F in its first stages. The high firing takes about 8 hours. When the clay & glaze have reached a high temperature, then the temperature is reduced to a set temperature for 6-10 hours. This is the time frame that the magic of glass crystal forms in the glaze on the porcelain pot.

The glass-glaze, in liquid form, creates atoms of maturing glass that, from the heat and the chemical mixture of the glaze, forms atoms that explode & recede numerous times during this heating process of the firing, creating the two dimensional crystals on the porcelain pot. It is when the glass crystals atoms of the glaze matures and explodes, making the unique 3 dimensional effective in the two dimensional crystal glaze on the three dimensional porcelain pot.

Crystalline Glazing is A very unique, beautiful, multi dimensional way of covering a porcelain pot with a glass covering.