Along the Natchez Trace

Friday, February 22, 2013

Sevilla Ceramics... tiles etc

The Moors, from the African Continent arrived in Spain around 400 BC and were here until Queen Isabella ousted them in 1492.  Their influence is still felt today in the art of ceramics in Spain. 

 By the 12th century an important factory was established in Malaga (south of Sevilla).  And by the 16th century Sevilla and Toledo had began the producing the tiles in mass production.  Tiles were sold in Great Britain, and in 1520, they were used to furnish the Vatican rooms and the San Angelo Castle in Rome.

Still today the ceramic art thrives in the Triana area of Sevilla.

On our way to school each day we pass several of these tile companies....  and you can't walk but a few feet down any street but you'll see examples of the work.
The tiles are used as a decorative border around these doorways.  

About a block from our B&B is this company.  I believe they produce decorative mirrors and other items used in decorating a house.
I'm not sure if this company is still in operation...  it's hard to see what's going on because the fronts of the buildings are right at the sidewalk edge...  much more goes on in areas behind that we never see.

This is the biggest ceramic company that we've come across...
We're told that they do not actually fire the tiles or ceramics in kilns at this location due to the pollutants the glazes create.  I wonder if they still use lead in the glazes?

Across the street from that company is a beautiful mosaic wall...
I took this photo a few days ago...  but that wall isn't going to change.  

We see all this within a couple of blocks where we live...
I always look in the shop windows...
Would you like a game board made of tile?
Looks like maybe Monopoly....  and perhaps Parcheesi?
How about a ceramic sink for your bathroom?

There are shops that make big items
Like for your yard, patio, or sunroom.
A lot of places discourage (okay... they just plain don't allow) a person to take photographs inside their shops.  
I suppose this is to keep someone from copying their designs.
I take many, many photos from outside...  looking in.

The businesses all over Sevilla have tile signage...
 Often, they tell what business it is and the name...  and, like this farmacia, show a chemist in an apothecary shop dispensing drugs.

Oh My!  The bars and restaurants are VERY extravagant with their tile designs!
 It's fun to walk down the street and just look at all the artwork!

There are many fountains, small patio areas, monuments and the such in the Parque Maria Luisa that incorporate the tile in their design.
 As nearly as I can tell, this area is to honor a family or an organization.  The fountain has the ships in tile...  and look at both sides...

The walls with benches run about 30' or more on each side...
and they have pictures, names, dates etc.

There is some graffiti on this side...
It is curious to me because of the name...  Hey... Danny & Donna...  do you have any Spanish ancestors?

There are whole areas of tile work in the park, including fabulous fountains and all the tile at the Plaza de Espana.  

Many buildings have plaques on them honoring a person who probably lived there but is now deceased. 
 Lovely tributes to good people...

Or this...
 Not sure how the top plaque is related to the bottom one, 
but I love looking at them all.

Sometimes I peek into open doorways...  I'm not looking into someone's house, but rather looking into the entrance of an apartment building..
Look at this colorful tile entryway!

A short walk from our Triana neighborhood the city is more commercial - we see the hospital, bigger stores, taller buildings...  lots more businesses.
Look at this apartment building..
This hi-rise apartment is quite modern...  but see the decorative tile insets between the windows?

Isn't it great to see that the old ceramic craft is being used in the building designs today?

It's so interesting just walking around and looking at so much imagination... so much talent...  so much artwork..
So much history!

That's All For Today!


  1. Just amazing stuff. Thanks for the photos.

  2. The colors! ... love the ~whatever shade of yellow that is on the top picture and the blue awnings ~ jeeez that's pretty.

    Another great stroll! it is indeed beautiful artwork... no food today...

  3. So beautiful! Love all that exquisite tile work.

  4. Awesome stuff. We don't value art. We don't put money into buildings or urban art as is shown here. You're on a fascinating adventure.

  5. What imaginative and incredible tile work they have. I'm glad you appreciate it so much and share it with us.

  6. Fascinating! I know of someone that did put one of those pretty ceramic sinks into her RV bathroom. I wonder how it's holding out for her?
    Love the tributes to people - those are great.

  7. What an amazing array of tiles. Ceramic seems to last forever, so I can't imagine how many folks have gotten to enjoy that work.