Talavera is an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, which has a denomination of origin, but it is important to know the conditions to ensure that it is an authentic product.
According to manufacturers in Puebla, the designation of origin is only for the talavera made in Puebla and Tlaxcala, so there are multiple workshops that manufacture it and other sites that sell it in those areas.
Some recommendations to buy original talavera, are:
- Buy from certified workshops or businesses. You can check some of them here.
- Certified workshops usually put their name below the products, as well as the place of elaboration; this must be Puebla or Tlaxcala.
- Ask about the material from which it was made. If it is talavera, it must be made with red clay, according to Puebla en Talavera.
- Also, it must be hand-painted only with the traditional colors: fat blue, thin blue, green, yellow, orange and black, as indicated by Puebla en Talavera.
What is Talavera?
According to the Ministry of Economy, the elaboration of Talavera is mainly used for common use utensils such as plates, vases, tibores, vases, washbasins, religious articles and decorative figures.
It is a type of ceramic that is created from the mixing of mud in clay and water, a material is obtained, which with the maturation process, takes the characteristic of malleability. Subsequently, the material is baked to obtain the characteristic red-orange color. In this step, the product is called jahuete.
Next, the enamel is prepared from alarca, an amalgam of lead and tin that is ground together with grit. The objects in question are covered by immersion or runoff, by the glaze, cleaning the edges of support at the base, known as relez, leaving uncovered in them, the color of the mud.
The decorations, in which the colors used are of mineral origin and elaborated in the same workshop, are: fat blue, fine blue, green, yellow, orange and black. These tones are applied on the dry enamel, by hand using two techniques: feathering and erasing, used for unique designs, and stenciling, which does not limit the creativity to replicate the designs.
Once the decoration is finished, the piece undergoes a second firing, in a kiln at very high temperature, which gives it the glazed finish and the final colors, which cannot be seen during the previous process.
Translation done by: Karla Giselle Bonales Ramírez