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9-12 Inspired by Majolica


Products Used

  • Low Fire Red Clay, Wheel-thrown or hand-built forms
  • FN-001 White
  • SC-15 Tuxedo
  • SC-24 Dandelion
  • SC-26 Green Thumb
  • SC-30 Blue Dawn
  • SC-33 Fruit of the Vine
  • SC-41 Brown Cow
  • SC-78 Lime Light
  • SC-82 Tuscan Red
  • S-2101 Crystal Clear
Decorating Accessories
  • CB-110 #10/0 Mini Liner
  • CB-202 #2 Detail Liner
  • CB-604 #4 Soft Fan
  • AC-230 Clay Carbon Paper
  • BT-910 Synthetic Sponge

Miscellaneous Accessories


wp071 InspiredByMajolica

Techniques: Wheel Throwing or Hand-building, Glaze Application
Course Length: 1-2 weeks (allow for dry time and firing)
Level: Advanced, grades 9-12
Download Plan: Inspired by Majolica


Art (Ceramics) + Art History (Majolica Pottery + Italian Renaissance)

Majolica, a white-glazed pottery technique from the Italian Renaissance period, can be adapted to many types of traditional ceramic ware. It is identified by its opaque, tin-oxide glaze and decorations of bright colors on a white background (firing result of tin-oxide). During Majolica's beginning, tin was an imported substance, so it was more expensive to create with ceramic glazes. These materials were used to design on sculpture art and sculptural relief, as well as functional pottery. Because of its detailed aesthetic, a smooth surface is best for application, including a border of glaze to frame the design of a piece.


  • Students will study historical styles of Majolica pottery decoration, as well as the proper glaze techniques and glaze applications for this type of work.
  • Students will learn to paint a Majolica style (in stages), using the traditional white base glaze, as well as a limited color palettes for the simplistic design.
  • Students will create a classical (simple) renaissance theme for their piece, focusing on composition; staying true to the application process.

National Standards (9-12)

  • VA:Cr2.2.HSI Explain how traditional and non-traditional materials may impact human health and the environment and demonstrate safe handling of materials, tools, and equipment.
  • VA:Cr2.1.HSII Through experimentation, practice, and persistence, demonstrate acquisition of skills and knowledge in a chosen art form.
  • VA:Cn10.1.HSII Utilize inquiry methods of observation, research, and experimentation to explore unfamiliar subjects through art-making.
  • VA:Re9.1.HSIII Construct evaluations of a work of art or collection of works based on differing sets of criteria.


Part 1. Wheel-thrown or Hand-building Instructions:
  1. Whether hand-building or wheel-throwing, create 3 cylindrical forms at least 3-4 inches tall.
  2. Bisque fire to shelf cone 04.
Part 2. Glaze Application:
  1. Using a damp BT-910 Synthetic Sponge, wipe away any dust that may be on the bisque.
  2. Using CB-604 #4 Soft Fan, apply 2 coats of FN-001 White to the interior and exterior of each piece. If desired, leave some of the red clay exposed. Allow to dry.
  3. Using a pencil and AC-230 Clay Carbon Paper, trace the pattern onto the forms. 
  4. Apply 2 coats of desired colors to each of the parts of the graphics. Using CB-202 #2 Detail Liner and SC-110 #10/0 Mini Liner.
  5. Using CB-110 #10/0 Mini Liner, outline the pattern using SC-15 Tuxedo. Dipping the brush in water before outlining will help the glaze to glide easily.
  6. Once dry, create a line on the bottom by applying 2 coats of SC-30 Blue Dawn using CB-202 #2 Detail Liner.
  7. Once dry, using CB-604 #4 Soft Fan, apply S-2101 Crystal Clear brushing to any unglazed areas. 
  8. Stilt and fire to cone 06.

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