Bricks and Tiles – Forms of construction

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5 – 9 April 2022 – Organised by Universidade Nova de Lisboa (Portugal)

In this Crafthub residency, Crafthub craft practitioners were exposed to an approachable, but sophisticated level of knowledge about glaze compositions at the Faculty of Science and Technology of NOVA University, explored the world renowned Azulejo (Portuguese blue tiles) Museum in Lisbon with an exclusive guided tour conducted by the Director, and then moved to the interior of the Portuguese Alentejo region to engage in traditional Portuguese craft processes at the Telheiro da Encosta do Castelo.

Beginning on April 5, 2022, Crafthub partner NOVA University (Caparica, Portugal) hosted nine craft practitioners from different nations over the course of a week at the School of Science and Technology (FCT NOVA) and at Oficinas do Convento (Montemor o Novo).

The “Bricks and Tiles – Forms of Construction” CraftHub Residency focused on ceramic materials and gave participants practical experience using traditional Portuguese clay building materials and added to their personal knowledge base. The main emphasis was on participants’ artistic development using recognizable tiles and bricks that adorn the interiors and exteriors of Portuguese houses. The artistic traditions that have developed over time in the local environment were also explored.

Here you can watch the whole YouTube playlist about the Crafthub Maker Exchange Residency in Lisbon (Portugal):

The residency got underway with a trip to the FCT NOVA research facility VICARTE “Glass and Ceramics for the Arts,” which was followed by a trip to Lisbon’s famed Azulejo museum, “Museu Nacional do Azulejo.” An in-depth tour provided by the museum director allowed visitors to explore the history of Azulejos from the 15th century to the present.

The participants were led through multi-level learning and practical experience of a Portuguese tradition in the residency’s second phase, which also enabled a contemporary engagement through the participants’ perception of how traditional construction materials are produced. All the stages of the process were considered, including modelling, ornamentation (both sculptural and pictorial) in raw and biscuit fired forms, and final firings. Small compositional exercises were created with bricks and tiles.

Our craft practitioners had the opportunity throughout the residency to experiment with various methods and materials, producing a range of samples for Craft Hub’s material library.