A huge thank you to the members of the Briggs Elementary School art club in Florence South Carolina for their educational and fundraising efforts! With the guidance of their art teacher, these 3rd to 6th graders chose to educate their community this year about the need for clean water and about Potters for Peace. They made small pots and informational handouts to give out at their school family day, created an information table, and collected donations.
After eight years of hard work, Peter Chartrand has stepped down from his post as US Director of Potters for Peace and we are happy to welcome Abby Silver, a potter from Boulder, Colorado, to the position.
Abby was a production potter for many years and now works on large public art pieces. She has travelled extensively and has worked as both an employee and a volunteer with several community organizations. She is also a long-time supporter of Potters for Peace. We are confident that her skills and energy will be valuable assets for our organization.
Peter Chartrand will continue his filter work with Potters for Peace but please direct all inquiries, both about filters and on other matters, to email@example.com and Abby will send them on to the appropriate Potters for Peace people.
At this time we would like to thank Peter for his hard work and dedication as the US “point person” for Potters for Peace and we look forward to working with him in future Ceramic Water Filter projects. Peter will remain a vibrant part of PfP in our filter program.
Abby’s full contact information is:
Potters for Peace
PO Box 2214
Boulder CO 80306
One of the groups we’ve given technical assistance to is the Magu Cooperativa in La Arada, Honduras near the border with El Salvador. They are keeping the Lenca tradition alive and well with their beautiful pieces using the traditional Lenca clay resist technique. They have grown in to a new studio and workshop. They employ women in the community to make and decorate pieces and have grown to the point that as of last week they were working to fill a 1,200 piece order. We’re proud of the work they produce and look forward to working with them in the future to help them implement some new design ideas they are working on.
Cooperativa San Expedicto is a pottery workshop that is located near Jinotege, in the coffee-growing hills of northern Nicaragua. Up until a few months ago, the potters of San Expedicto were handbuilders, but they asked Potters for Peace to arrange some training sessions on the wheel, and now much of their work is wheel-thrown. All their work is highly burnished and then fired once in a wood-fired kiln. After an hour or so, the pots are removed from the kiln and smoked in sawdust until they are solid black. When the pots have cooled, a design is usually scratched through the black surface to reveal the light-coloured clay beneath it.
On a recent visit to Cooperativa San Expedito, the women of the cooperativa demonstrated the firing method that they use to achieve a solid black finish on their work, and they finished up their demo with a delicious surprise. The pots we brought back from San Expedito will always remind us of the warmth and enthusiasm of these potters, not to mention the melt-in-your-mouth taste of their fresh-baked rosquillas.
Click on each image below to enlarge it and then use the BACK button to return to the thumbnails.
Potters for Peace (PfP) members Robert Pillers, Reynaldo Diaz and Kaira Wagoner showed off their ceramic weapons of mass bacterial destruction at the UNC Water and Health conference in Chapel Hill, NC last week (October 29-November 2). Joining over 100 experts on water, sanitation and health, PfP learned and shared with the best in the field. PfP contributed with a poster presentation, an oral presentation and a live filter demonstration… not to mention the countless lively discussions regarding filter production, quality control, and the way forward.
We are excited about where the filter is headed, and proud of our contribution thus far. With a small budget, PfP has helped establish around 40 factories in 28 countries in just 14 years! With your support, we can keep up the good, hard work. Thanks to all those who have helped us get this far. Ron PRESENTE!
Cooperativa San Expedicto is a pottery co-op of women making black pottery in the style of Mata Ortiz, Mexico with a beautiful, rich black luster surface. This is a new group we are working with in the Department of Jinotega. Recently we had a workshop for the women in design and throwing on the wheel. They are a delightful group of women to work with, very energized and with lots of ideas.
Finishing up his work in Ha-Mashamba, Limpopo, South Africa working with the Mokondini Women’s Potter in partnership with the University of Virginia and University of Venda in South Africa, Peter Chartrand sent on pictures of his work building a kiln for the group and working on clay/burn out material formulas for water filters. The women were great to work with!
Potters for Peace consultant Peter Chartrand is currently working on a filter project in the Limpopo province of South Africa. The project is based at the Mokondini Women’s Pottery Cooperative, which is collaborating with both the University of Virginia and South African University of Venda. The pottery group just fired the reconstructed kiln which has a 70-filter capacity. The firing was a big success, with even temperatures throughout and filter flow rates averaging 1.9 l/h (1-2.5 l/h being the acceptable range.)
At the Potters for Peace tables at NCECA 2012 in Seattle, board members and volunteers spent the weekend fundraising and exchanging ideas and information with the many people who visited us. This is always a good fundraising opportunity and to those of you who supported us by entering the raffle (for a ceramic water filter), buying a t-shirt or a piece of Nicaraguan jewellery, or making a donation, thanks.
It was great to make personal contact with our supporters and to spread the word (in person) about our work with Nicaraguan potters, our brigades and our filter projects. See you at NCECA 2013!
For those of you whose eyes lit up when we described our unforgettable brigades, check our website in September for the dates and application form for our 2013 brigade.
Here’s a different take on our water filters. Some misinformation but at least he makes us smile.
Not sure that this fellow will be able to find a local pottery shop to make him an unglazed flower pot without the hole in the middle that he can use as a water filter, but he’s correct in his evaluation of the best qualities of ceramic water filters: they’re effective and inexpensive to make.