Modernisation of Myanmar spells bad news for traditional ceramics

Something for you ceramicists – a feature about how traditional ceramics makers in Myanmar are struggling against the influx of plastic and metal vessels from the opening of the economy.

Source: Fox News 20140916
Source: Fox News 20140916

Myanmar’s once-thriving clay pot industry struggles amid rapid changes, modernization
Fox News, 16 September 2014

For generations, the Myanmar town of Twante has been known for its thriving pottery industry. Even today, residents can be seen sitting on wooden stools beneath the thatched roofs of their homes, placing lumps of soft clay onto wheels and shaping it with the gentle press of their fingertips into pots for cooking, storing water, preserving fish or flowers.

But the opening up of this once-isolated Southeast Asian of 50 million in 2011, when ruling generals handed over power to a nominally civilian government, has affected traditional ways. Modernization and the reluctance of the younger generation to learn the art of pottery, compounded by the cost of transporting the bulky and fragile products, have turned it into an unstable, dying industry.

Full story here.

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Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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