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Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

By David Tran on Oct 06, 2022

Though there are many things that the Vietnamese do well, making beautifully intricate works of ceramic is one of their top skills. Indeed, these versatile objects represent a large part of Vietnam's culture and history; you'll find them all over Asia, Europe, Africa - even around the world! With Indochina Sails—a trusted Halong Bay cruise company-- let's explore how this craft has evolved throughout time to reach international standards today.

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

While clay pots have existed since antiquity in Southeast Asian civilizations such as those found in Mesopotamia or Egyptian hieroglyphics depicting ancient potters turning clay on wheel just like in Vietnam today, ceramics were still largely imported from other parts of Asia until the 20th century when they gradually became an integral part of local traditions thanks largely to an abundance of raw materials such as kaolin used for porcelain or Vietnamese clays ideal for production high-quality terra cotta products.

A Brief History Of Vietnamese Ceramics.

Given that Vietnamese craftsmen began crafting pottery during the Bronze Age, it is not surprising that these pieces made of porcelain are a major contributor to Vietnam's culture today. One village in particular which still uses techniques used in Ancient Dong Son Village has managed to keep their products authentic and unchanged - which makes them worth looking at if you're interested.

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Around the same time, in southern Vietnam and Borneo, Sa Huynh culture was developing its own pottery style for use in tombs and chests containing the belongings of those who had died recently. These cultures laid down the beginnings to what would become an obsessive love for intricate pottery within Vietnamese society.

Throughout the following 10 centuries, Vietnamese ceramics took a much more Chinese approach. This began to change in the 11th century when the Ly Dynasty vanquished China, made Thang Long (Hanoi) its capital and influenced a period of renewed national pride. Jade-glazed pottery coming from Hanoi reached international acclaim across East Asia for another 200 years after this. The Ly Dynasty was succeeded by the Tran Dynasty, which continued potter work throughout northern Vietnam until 1400 AD; producing wares such as green glaze or brown coloured pots while they were at it – all while living up to an almost unprecedentedly glorious golden age across the country and beyond.

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Vietnamese ambassadors to China introduced Chinese techniques back home during this era, teaching them to villages that would go on to become powerhouse ceramic makers in Vietnam. Today, the village of Bat Trang is internationally famous within ceramics circles and yet their history stretches far back to the early 15th century when they first learned how to make white ceramics. Nearby towns such as Tho Ha and Phu Lang were producing beautiful red and yellow ceramics respectively at this time too - an era when Vietnamese discovered a style for themselves which was then used up until the present day. A royal hue called Bleu de Hué - blue over a white background - became popular amongst Nguyen dynasties around 1802 (an ultimate imperial family until 1945). Nowadays, these ceramics are hugely popular worldwide since they're seen as being among some of the finest pieces ever made.

Where to buy Vietnamese Ceramics?

Ceramic pieces from Vietnam might be difficult to bring back home, but this does not stop many travelers from filling up their luggage with handcrafted ceramics from across the country. While ceramic can be bought in major cities of Hanoi, Da Nang, and Ho Chi Minh City, we recommend heading straight to the village source where your unique souvenirs are more authentic and usually cheaper. Bat Trang - Most people looking for where to buy ceramics in Vietnam will settle on Bat Trang - a small village with a huge reputation. Bat Trang is located outside of Hanoi and is one of the largest centers for pottery in Vietnam, attracting both casual browsers and serious collectors. Many utensils and decorative ceramics have been added into many homes throughout Vietnam because they're cheap quality while durable - found at local markets within the town or even further away than that.

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Phu Lang - Along with Bat Trang, Phu Lang was founded under the Tran Dynasty and has continued to produce beautiful ceramic arts ever since. The village is located in the province of Bac Ninh, which borders Hanoi to the northeast and offers convenient access for tourists who wish to visit on a day trip. Early in its history (15th Century), they became well known for their yellow ceramic wares; however now they focus primarily on making large jars and pots meant for daily use.

Thanh Ha - This beautiful village reminds you of parts of Hoi An that may have been lost or forgotten over time - yet still retains its own unique charm. Located by Thu Bon River (central Vietnam), it produces distinctive red potteries from houses made of earthy textures. Their products are usually large containers meant for household purposes; however small items can be purchased as souvenirs in an atmosphere comprised of stunning red brick structures.

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Bau Truc - Naturally, differences exist in the clay sculptures of this village thanks to Bau Truc's unique craftsmanship. It is found in Ninh Thuan Province, near the southern town of Dalat, which makes it the right place for those who wish to learn about Vietnamese culture through pottery and experience time-honoured processes. With urns made without an oven or kiln, these still burn at over 700 °C using wood as fuel! Moreover, black jugs feature different symbols from relics left behind by ancient cultures in South East Asia.

Bien Hoa - This Cham inspired studio comes complete with a mix of antique creations alongside modern technologies where tourists can watch everything being created just before their eyes. urns built using traditional methods but stamped with contemporary imagery are one fine example among many pieces worth drooling over...

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Perhaps one of the best contenders for an aesthetically pleasing place to purchase Vietnamese ceramics is Vinh Long. Located on the banks of the Co Chien River in the expansive Mekong Delta, this town offers serene scenery and splendid views: giant red brick kilns adorn in colorfully painted pottery, symbolizing what has been perfected through history and heritage. Behind these handcrafted pieces, large banana leaves shelter them from view. Large gardens outside create additional visual appeal amidst a mix of flourishing greens contrasted by rows upon rows of neatly trimmed hedges.

The mesmerizing array of red ceramic finds its way inside homes too; various decorative items including dishes and trays give character to households across Vinh Long’s humble workshops. Above all else we know that culture plays a major role here—nothing says hospitality quite like being welcomed into someone's home while being surrounded by custom-made wares crafted using traditional methods handed down over generations!

Everything you wanted to know about Vietnamese ceramic

Our lounges, for example, feature jars and pots handcrafted in Bat Trang across various design styles - from blues hues to more elaborate colorful pieces. They're situated around the ship's main display case to provide some luxury flair as well as give it a grounding touch of Vietnamian tradition. The bedrooms are embellished with one of these gorgeous lacquer designs starting at the headboard and running down the top part of the wall all the way towards the end where they flow over onto ceilings beautifully. Each uniquely-detailed work is made by skilled families residing in Ha Thai - about 30 kilometers away from Hanoi city center. Since 17th century times, 650 families living there have been well-known for being expert lacquer painters who've passed this skill down through generations!

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