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what is classically trained?

updated sun 18 apr 10


Dayton Grant on sat 17 apr 10

Could you describe "classically trained"? Apprenticeship?
The guild system in Europe?

I got this definition from Wikipedia

Classical antiquity is a long period of history centered on the Mediterrane=
an Sea, comprising the interlocking civilizations of Ancient Greece and Anc=
ient Rome. This period is conventionally taken to stretch from roughly the =
7th or 8th century BC to the 5th century AD. It is often seen as a golden a=
ge of Western civilisation, preceding the Dark Ages of the early medieval p=

But what I mean specifically by 'classically trained' is trained to most ef=
ficiently throw the most common and popular shapes of the classical era (fr=
om around 500 B.C.) like the Kylix, Panathenaic Amphora, Neck Amphora, Alab=
astron, Arballos, Kantharos, Oinochoe, Krater , etc. , which incidentally, =
were thrown with very firm clay and little water, as this is the only way t=
o throw these large thin shapes in one piece without taking an inordinate a=
mount of time on each piece. It's just what I was taught and how I was trai=
ned, I could be mistaken about how important this is for a modern ceramic e=
ducation. But I was led to believe that it is 'very' important, and I tried=
to look up classical Chinese pottery and they don't call 'anything' of the=
irs 'classical' but what the West refers to as their 'classics' are usually=
the best things from the various dynasties. I tend to consider a Ginger Ja=
r a classic Chinese shape. And I believe every modern potter
especially a college teacher should be able to execute and demonstrate the=
choreography of this fairly easy shape and its fitting lid, actually all o=
f the Greek shapes I mentioned above also.