Phu Lang – Ceramic Village

 

Phu Lang is situated on the Cau River, 60 km north of Ha Noi.

It is told that by the end of the Ly dynasty (13th century), three Vietnamese doctors under the names of Luu Phong Tu, Hua Vinh Cau and Dao Tri Tien were sent to China as the King's envoys. On their way back home, they visited Thieu Chau (China) and learned the art of ceramics that they then taught to the people of their native villages.

 

Phu Lang terracotta is noticed for its eel skin enamel and some modifications like light yellow, dark yellow and other yellow derivates. Major raw materials used to produce enamels are firewood ashes, rice husk ashes, powdered lime and stone. Eel skin enamel is a mixture of red powdered stone and ashes while brown enamel requires the use of mud.

The first stage of the process consists of selecting the kaolin that is the main material for terracotta. Kaolin is dried, smashed, and kneaded in water tanks. Craftsmen then shape the paste on their turning tables or it is used with some kind of molding forms. Objects are left to dry, and then smoothed and covered with enamels. The process ends with thorough drying and baking at 1000°C.

 more impressions can be found here.