Ceramics are an important archaeological source of information, teaching us indirectly more about the people in the past who made, used and discarded it. Experimentation may include making ceramics with similar clay sources, techniques (heel thrown or not) or testing pottery kilns which can be compared to their archaeological examples. Thin sections of reproduced pottery are compared with original sherds to see if ‘we got it right’. In the years 2018-2019, EXARC was part of CRAFTER, a project about Bronze Age pottery being reproduced by modern potters.

In the EuroREA (fully available on this website) we published several articles on Ceramics. Here as PDFs:

EuroREA 1/2004
Experimental Pottery Firing in Closed Firing Devices from the Neolithic – Hallstatt Period in Central Europe (PDF)
STUDIES - Richard Thér, Society for Experimental Archaeology (CZ) 

EuroREA 1/2004
Experiments on pottery manufacture (PDF)
ITEMS - Felix Adrian, Tencariu (RO) 

EuroREA 3/2006
Implications of crushed pottery in prehistoric pottery (PDF)
ITEMS - Martin Hložek, Radomír Tichý, Hana Dohnálková, Iva Dohnálková (CZ)

EuroREA 3/2006
Pots and drums: an acoustic study of Neolithic pottery drums (PDF)
STUDIES - Lynda Aiano (UK) 


A Preliminary Attempt to Reconstruct some Tools and Techniques of Ornamentation of the Comb-Pit Ware from the Site of Hepojarvi (Karelian Isthmus, Leningrad Oblast, Russia)

Alexander Akulov (RU)
The site of Hepojarvi is located on the northern coast of Hepojarvi lake, near Saint Petersburg, Russia. The site is a multi-layer settlement with different types of Neolithic pottery (from Sperrings to late Comb-Pit Ware); the settlement functioned in 5314 cal BC – 2342 cal BC. It was excavated in 1978 by I. V. Vereschagina. The aim of the current paper is to reconstruct some concrete tools and techniques of ornamentation...

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...

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...

Review: The Second Annual Vounous Terracotta Symposium

E. Giovanna Fregni (IT)
Rauf Ersenal has hiked through the mountains of North Cyprus for years, searching for the rare clays that have been used to make pottery there for millennia. The most prized colours of these clays produce a soft green that is the colour of fresh olives, the bright red of terra sigiliata, and another clay that creates a true black...

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)...

Some Remarks on Technological Process of Tartessian Pottery

Michał Krueger,
Marta Krueger and
Karol Jakubowski (PL)
This paper makes an attempt to examine the Tartessian ceramics not from a traditional typological posture seeking the chronological sequences, but from an uncommon approach, where experiment plays an important role. The goal is to shed light on these still relatively weakly recognised aspects of the study of the pottery from the South-western part of Iberian Peninsula...

Experimental Production of High and Late Medieval Pottery at the Scientific Research Centre in Panská Lhota

K. Těsnohlídková,
K. Slavíček and
J. Mazáčková (CZ)
Experimental pottery production at the scientific research centre of the Institute of Archaeology and Museology at the Masaryk University Faculty of Arts (from here on ÚAM) in Panská Lhota began in the summer of 2012. The primary target of the experimental pottery production was an attempt to understand the manufacturing process...

Reconstruction of the Geometric Décor Technology of the Bronze Age Ceramics in Siberia

Eva Lamina (US)
The grassland and forest steppes ranging from the Ural to the Altai-Sayan mountains were dominated by Andronovo Family cultures during the second millennium BC (the Bronze Age) (Koryakova & Epimakhov 2007; Мартынов 2005). The Andronovo dated ceramic series were characterized by a distinctly expressed geometric ornamentation style...

The Iron Age Iberian Experimental Pottery Kiln of Verdú, Catalonia, Spain

R. Cardona Colell,
J. Pou Vallès,
N. Calduch Cobos,
B. Gil Limón,
J. M. Gallego Cañamero and
L. Castillo Cerezuela (ES)
The goal of this project is to reconstruct the operational sequence of manufacture of Iberian Iron Age pottery, from clay procurement to firing in a reconstructed kiln. Although pottery is the most characteristic artefact recovered on Iberian Iron Age excavations, most of its complex processes and production techniques remain poorly known...

An Experimental Comparison of Impressions Made from Replicated Neolithic Linen and Bronze Age Woollen Textiles on Pottery

Lauren Ferrero (UK)
Textile impressions on pottery provide evidence for fabrics and weaves in areas where the fabrics themselves do not survive. This article argues that the impressions can provide information on the uses of different fibres, the weaving technologies and possible trading or agricultural advances connected with these fibres...

An Experimental Approach to Studying the Technology of Pottery Decoration

Golnaz Hossein Mardi (CA)
8th UK EA Conference Oxford 2014
***The early Middle Chalcolithic pottery tradition of Seh Gabi Tepe in Iran is called Dalma tradition. Among the different types of Dalma pottery, I have focused on monochrome painted ceramics, to investigate, by means of experimental analysis, how their decoration technology was undertaken...

The Registry of Memory Process Applied to Experimental Archaeology in a Castromao “Oven”

Andrés Teira-Brión (ES),
Josefa Rey-Castiñeira (ES) and
Clíodhna Ní Líonain (IE)
7th UK EA Conference Cardiff 2013
***Memory is the cognitive process that codifies, stores and retrieves past actions that are perceived in the present, generating our remembrances and perceptions of the past and informing our knowledge of the world around us (...) Applied to archaeology, memory can be understood as the marks or...

Technical Elements for Etruscan-Padan Kilns Firing and Female Labour Connected to These Tools

Francesca Caresani (IT)
This article presents work connected to the GestiRitrovati project, the association that performs archaeological experiments at the Forcello Archaeological Park (Mn). The aim is to recover archaic customs of Etruscan-Padan pottery production...

Probable Measure Estimating Tool Employed by the Aeneolithic Potters

Eva Lamina (US)
The article proposes that an item, ornamented with a geometric pattern with inscribed diagonal cross and attributed to the Afanasievo culture (Aeneolithic, South Siberia), represents a primitive tool reflecting practical knowledge of basic geometry by the ancient potters. The article suggests an experimental reconstruction method for crafting the proposed instrument, and...