kashan lusterware

Kashan Lusterware is a type of pottery with a reflective sheen, produced by metallic oxides and an overglaze finish.


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Luster is basically reflected light and has various meanings that combine elements of the physical and the metaphysical. As a chemical process, the common factor in lusterware is the use of pigments containing (among other things) compounds of silver and copper, and a reduction firing which convert the pigments to a metallic sheen. As a physical process, it is the sheen created by light reflected off a surface; as a metaphysical concept, it is the radiance that comes from within an object or person of great purity or beauty.


Lustreware is a decorative technique invented by 9th century AD Abbasid potters in what is today Iraq. The potters believed that making lustreware was truly "alchemy", because the process involves using a lead-based glaze to create a golden shine on a pot without gold in it.


Luster was used on plates, bowls, ewers, and tile. This luxury ceramic is known for its multicolored figural decoration and polychrome surface. Kashan style decoration includes the use of geometric, zoomorphic, botanical, and figurative designs.


Lusterware was a remarkable achievement by Islamic potters, combining knowledge of the glass making process (possibly from Egypt) with the use of white, alkaline, tin glazes on ceramic bodies.


Ceramic luster techniques became pervasive in the Islamic world, eventually spreading to Syria, North Africa and into Spain, following the course of Islamic conquests.



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