13 Jul 2009

Kaiti Anastasaki





I met Kaiti Anastasaki at her workshop in Athens, surely one of the most impressive workspaces I have visited in Greece. She was sitting at her worktable with a small tool in her hand, adding defining lines to a large clay bowl. Next to her, a coworker sat carving a clay figure of a woman with a small scalpel. Kaiti's first workshop opened in 1980 in Crete. Since then, her production and popularity have multiplied many times. I was impressed to see that despite the demand for her work, all the pieces were still being made by hand and with patient detail.
Kaiti's ceramics are symbolistic, some with a touch of surrealism. Although deep inside her designs are ancient Greek roots, her collection stands out among other bodies of work as being artistically innovative, rich in textures and new concepts. Kaiti works mainly with stoneware clay fired at 1250 ºC and up, but her designs in clay can include anything from glass, iron, wood, or engravings to achieve the desired feel and perspective. The decorative colors are added using basic oxides and her own handmade glazes. The range of her work is almost immeasurable. She uses geometrical designs, like her "Cubists" and "Robots"and impressionistic human forms as in her piece "Boulis". Her collection includes everything from functional furniture, oversized wall art, colorful mosaics, mirrors, and miniatures. Her ceramics are easily distinguishable from others for their illustrative style and premium quality.
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