"A thousand year of Bat Trang" Bat Trang by hientonkin
Bat Trang Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 6 photos
This is where you will find it's always hotter than outside of the village 2 - 3 degree. Far from Hanoi 13 km, it would be nice if you can ride a motorbike, rolling on the dyke along the Red river.
Then you will find the big greeting to Bat Trang village, pay attention, there are 2 greeting, on both of them is " Bat Trang" . But one of them, the first one you see is the village which is next to Bat Trang. We call it " Giang Cao village, Bat Trang commune " . Ok, continue to Bat Trang. At first, it seems a bit dissapointed to see just shops with air-con, displaying many ceramics and pottery. Dont be hurry, along to the main road, you will find the traditional village ( or you can ask someone there to show you ). What you will find here?
Each house make different products, you see them by eyes, the whole routine. It's just lovely to know how pottery were made. Go to the house of the artist Nguyen Minh Ngoc to see the biggest vase of Vietnam ( 3.2 metres ). he is making the biggest one of the world ( more than 5 metres - bigger than one in China ). I cant wait to see it !!!
The most famous region producing ceramics is Bat Trang. Here are plenty of materials of kaolin and feldspar available. ( but now, kaolin is run of in Bat Trang, the village must buy from Quang Ninh ).
People here said that the road in Bat Trang are small ( I think better call " lane" ) because if thieves come here, they cant get out with something big ( it's true ). I feel quite challenging riding bicyle on the small lanes. But people here still do that everyday quite skillfull. :)
And the "lanes" not only small but have coal pats drying in the sun, the alleys are deeply rutted as heavily laden carts swing by carrying loads of huge finished pots.
Bat Trang techniques and designs are blended with new ideas, glazes and patterns, the kilns were producing at least long ago as the 16th cenntury and maybe even beyond that.
Must be a very skillful artist to make these big vases, or else, there are many cracks after firing the products.
** Choosing clay
** Preparing clay: clay is piled up then sliced for times with special tools. Next, it's stepped until it becomes pliable and soft. Then soaked in pool for 3 & 4 days to be pure
** Making glaze and glazing: Dull and transparent were main glazes in the past.
** Shaping product: Using wheeling table move around while smoothing clay by hand to the shape expected.
** Smoothing product
** Kiln and firing
Just some of household still produce by this way. Others company use machine and electric to dry and kiln the products.
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