In Lombok Island, the art of making pots is rooted deep in their history.

Sasak potters frequently have to search for new clay sources. They are the astute judges of the necessary properties of unprocessed clay and examine not only its texture and stickiness but also its colour, smell and taste. They may also buy clay from vendors who bring it by horse carts from hills over 10 km away.

With the newly dug clay, it takes several days to transform it into the fine pliable material needed to make a pot…

  • First, the dry lumps are soaked in water for half a day or longer in order to wet the particles of clay thoroughly. The longer the soak, the greater the adhesion of particles to one another and the stronger the pot once fired.
  • The mixture is then screened through a homemade bamboo and wire-mesh sieve to remove stones, roots and any undissolved lumps of clay.
  • The mixture is then poured out onto sacks to dry and stiffen in the sun. It may take up to two hours for the clay to become firm enough to handle.
  • In the final stage, sieved temper sand is mixed evenly through the clay by systematically treading with their bare feet, which takes about half an hour to wedge up the clay to a good workable consistency

With the fine pliable material, let us see how the Sasak women make the Biki, Ceret and Water Jar

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