Day-Trip from Kochi: Clayfingers, Thrissur

Photographer: APARNA NORI

Photographs: APARNA NORI

There’s something therapeutic about sinking your fingers into a pile of cool, soft clay that’s just waiting to be shaped, translating your creative flights into reality. And while that reality might not quite turn out the way you’d imagined it, the fun’s all in the process. Even more so if you’re learning the ropes at Clayfingers Pottery, a multidisciplinary ceramics workshop-cum-artists’ residency that occupies a sprawling, airy space in Thrissur, about an hour’s drive from Kochi. Housed in what was once a tile factory, this is a welcoming space for all manner of artist – in fact, you might spot many a quiet corner occupied by someone busy with paints, or sketching away with charcoal – but the mainstay here is the pottery. The working studio produces a range of handcrafted ceramics – primarily functional pieces like mugs, vases and the like – many of which end up in hotels and homes across the country. Walking around, you’ll pass the various stations; from where the clay’s mixed and made, to where the ceramics take shape, where they’re glazed, and even the large kiln that’s lit ever so often (there’s also an electric one that’s used more regularly). Fascinating as it all is, though, what you’re here for is to get your hands good and dirty…

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