CRAFTER 2018-2019 (Creative Europe)

What it is about

Reviving Europe’s Bronze Age and traditional pottery-making in a new cooperation project

A cooperation project led by the Friends Association of the Archaeological Site of La Bastida (ASBA), from Totana, Spain, is funded with 104.760,52 euros by the EACEA (Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency), on behalf of the European Commission. The project is called Crafting Europe in the Bronze Age and Today, CRAFTER for short, and will draw inspiration from Europe’s Bronze Age pottery to help revive modern-day artisanship.

The funding for CRAFTER is part of the Creative Europe programme and connected to the 2018 European Year of Cultural Heritage. The programme targets the appreciation of Europe's cultural heritage as a shared resource and the reinforcement of a sense of belonging to a common European space. In particular, it hopes to make cultural heritage a source of inspiration for contemporary creation and innovation, and strengthen the interaction between this sector and other cultural and creative sectors.

Key Objectives

  1. Four potters from Spain, Germany, Hungary and Serbia will draw on their skills to (re)create ceramic vessels representative of some of the most outstanding Bronze Age cultures of Europe: El Argar (southeast Spain), Únětice (Central Europe), Füzesabony (eastern Hungary) and Vatin (south Serbia).
  2. This process will at the same time be captured in four documentary films, which will showcase a double heritage: the prehistoric pottery and the nowadays threatened traditional artisanship.
  3. To turn the experiences acquired by the potters in the context of the project into an opportunity to revive their trade. CRAFTER is about sharing cultural heritage, preserving it, and finding innovative ways to make a sustainable tourism around it. To achieve this goal, and in addition to online dissemination, the project’s final initiative will seek to make the ceramic reproductions available for at museums and online shops, in an effort to open a market for these new creations.

Meetings / Events

  1. Cultural heritage professionals and local artisans from all participant countries will share views and experiences in a meeting that will set the scene for other actions. This first event will take place in autumn of 2018 and therefore highlight the European Year of Cultural Heritage.

    Prehistoric Potters gather in Mula (Spain)

    Organised by: Friends Association of the Archaeological Site of La Bastida (ASBA)(ES) and the Mula Town Hall

    Artisans and archaeologists meet in Spain to bring back prehistoric pottery. In the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, artisans and archaeologists meet in the Spanish city of Mula to think up new cultural products inspired on prehistoric ceramic vessels. The event, which will feature sessions open to the public, has a twofold goal... Read more

  2. CRAFTER exhibition is an event to be held simultaneously in Spain, Hungary, Germany and Serbia at the end of 2019: a gathering at which the ceramic replicas and new creations, alongside the documentaries, will be shared with a wide public. 



    The official CRAFTER trailer: the complete documentary shows more pottery locations in Spain, Germany, Serbia and Hungary. Its premiere and exhibition is scheduled for autumn 2019, accompanying an exhibition that will include Bronze Age inspired ceramics as produced about 4000 years ago.

    Crafter CatalogueCRAFTER Catalogue
    At the end of December 2019, and given the success and interest generated following the exhibition of the CRAFTER initiative at the Déri Museum (Débrecen, Hungary), it was decided to publish a bilingual work (Hungarian - English) booklet that would collect the information offered in the exhibition itself. See the PDF
    See also CRAFTER Pottery Exhibition Panels



    Presentation of CRAFTER ''European Crafting in the Bronze Age and Today'' - Exhibition and Activity Days

    Organised by: State Museum for Prehistory at Halle (DE)

    The State Museum of Prehistory Saxony-Anhalt at Halle (Saale) will present the replicas of four Early Bronze Age ceramics together with the documentary films showing their manufacture. Attendant will be the potter Beatrix Weißflog, the technician and metallurgist Frank Trommer, und a salter from the historical salt works at Halle (Saale)... Read more


    CRAFTER Exhibition Opening in Debrecen

    Organised by: Déri Museum (HU)

    The CRAFTER project has arrived at the final stage in Debrecen (HU). The exhibition "CRAFTER - European Crafts in the Bronze Age and Today" opened in Debrecen on Tuesday 15th October 2019 and will be open until 31st December 2019.... Read more


    Exhibition Opening in Mula

    Organised by: ASBA (ES)

    The results of the project have been collected in four exhibitions held in Europe, one of them at the Mula City Museum in Murcia, recently opened and open until mid-December. The exhibition includes recreations of several ceramic pieces from the Bronze Age cultures, exhibitions on the production of ceramic products and the screening of the documentary “In Their Hands. Reshaping pottery of the European Bronze Age”..... Read more


    CRAFTER Exhibition Opening in Serbia

    Organised by: Museum of Paraćin (RS)

    Following the idea of CRAFTER, all exhibited replicas have been placed at an open space and are tangible. This has allowed visitors to experience technological differences demonstrated in the films and by archaeological evidences. Furthermore, the exhibition at the Paraćin Museum has been complemented by pottery and weaving workshops, giving chance to visitors to participate actively in the event... Read more


Featured Articles

CRAFTER: An Experimental Approach to Fire-Induced Alteration of Pottery Fabrics

Carlos Velasco Felipe,
José María Bellón and
Bartolomé Bellón (ES)
In doing an inventory of ceramic materials from archaeological excavations, it is a common practice to indicate their observable atmosphere of firing. This parameter refers to the presence of gases, especially oxygen, during the firing and cooling of pottery: if oxygen circulates freely, the procedure is said to be oxidising; if, on the contrary, the atmosphere of firing lacks free air, it is called reducing...

CRAFTER: Re-creating Vatin Pottery 2: an Examination of Clay Quality and its Behaviour

Vesna Vučković and
Dejan Jovanović (RS)
This report presents series of experimental tests conducted by a team from the Regional museum at Paraćin, Serbia, one of members of the CRAFTER project. This research focused on the behavior of various mixtures of clays, using different modelling and firing techniques. The objective was to discover the most suitable blend, which will provide the best results in recovering technology of Vatin pottery production...

Event Review: CRAFTER: Back to Bronze Age Craftsmanship: International Meeting of Potters and Archaeologists

Ágnes Király (HU)
At the end of October 2018, nearly 30 experts – potters and archaeologists – met in the city of Mula (Murcia, Spain) to study Europe’s Bronze Age pottery-making techniques. The event was the initiation stage of the CRAFTER project (Crafting Europe in the Bronze Age and Today), implemented in the framework of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 and the Creative Europe Program...

CRAFTER: Potting Techniques of the Bronze Age

Caroline Jeffra (NL)
Throughout its history, experimental archaeology has fulfilled a valuable role in archaeological research, allowing craftspeople and scholars alike to deepen an understanding of people and their societies in the past. EXARC’s recent involvement in the CRAFTER project, and the author’s participation in its International Meeting in Mula (Spain), has demonstrated that significant knowledge gaps remain in...

CRAFTER: Re-creating Vatin Pottery

Vesna Vučković and
Dejan Jovanović (RS)
An attempt to re-create pottery of the Vatin culture has been made within the Crafter project (Crafting Europe in the Bronze Age and Today), whose aim is to help revive modern-day artisanship by drawing inspiration from Bronze Age pottery of four European Bronze Age societies: El Argar (Spain), Únětice (Central Europe), Füzesabony (eastern Hungary) and Vatin (Serbia)...

CRAFTER: Reviving Bronze Age Pottery in EU-funded Project

Carlos Velasco and
Miguel Valério (ES)
The CRAFTER project aims at reviving modern-day artisanship by drawing inspiration from pottery traditions of four of the most remarkable Bronze Age societies of Europe: El Argar (south-eastern Spain), Únětice (Central Europe), Füzesabony (eastern Hungary) and Vatin (south Serbia)...