Cliousclat - potters village
The history of Cliousclat's pottery
Cliousclat’s pottery works is a place with history, traditions and a unique atmosphere.
The name of the village comes from the Latin "Clium Usclati" and means “burnt hill”. Cliousclat - is a hilltop village, long known for its pottery: the first written evidence of the pottery works dates back to the 10th century. Over the centuries, Cliousclat’s pottery mostly used clay from the deposits surrounding the village to produce the glazed ceramics.
Cliousclat clay is of excellent quality and does not give any taste to food which is why it was widely used for milk storage (milk containers, jugs, etc.). The late 19th century was the golden age of the potters’ activity. Since the beginning of the 20th century, the output from the pottery has involved in order to survive and compete with new emerging materials (aluminum, plastic).
The idea of creating this pottery works was Marius Anjaleras’s. In 1902 he bought a 985m² plot of land outside the village and in 1903 the works opened its doors. It was large, equipped with a sedimentation basin, a basement for clay storage, a workshop for potters, a firing kiln and the yard with drying bars.
Marius Anjaleras’s pottery is known for its traditions with roots in the quality of the clay. It does not give a taste to contents, so it can be used to store liquids like milk, olive oil, wine, etc., but it is porous, so it must be waterproofed by glazing.
The output from the pottery has evolved over the course of time. Initially, the pottery was designed for domestic usage (kitchen tableware, milk production vessels, etc.).
When new materials appeared, in order to survive, the works changed its direction to garden all-sized vase production.
Then, production direction changes to "censibelle", that is to say ceramics called "fantasies", the small pieces such as coffee cups,”rossignols” (clay whistles).
The workshop has always been open to visitors.
Everyone and anyone drops by for a chat. The works employed 5 to 15 people, each with his/her own character, who over the time became a family. "When one was thirsty, the other wanted to drink". But they did not meet only at work. The potters liked to get together to celebrate or to have a good time.