Sculpturing with clay is the most common material used for artsy things and is widely used the world over. In fact, clay goes back historically to very old cultures including the Indians in this country. However, many do not know that clay for sculpturing is very abundant in India and is very affordable because it takes little effort to extract it. Clay is easily formed and inexpensive for the novice so that it makes the perfect material to use. Clay can be fired or unfired and be molded in numerous shapes and sizes to suit the creativity of anyone who uses it.
Generally items made within the clay sculpture perimeter vary from tiny little statues meant as collectibles to huge creations meant for display and decorating large areas, like public places (gardens, parks, etc.). The themes present in clay sculpture are as varied as there are things, people, animals and plants around us. Thus, sculptors have created clay sculpture items depicting humans, human heads or busts, animals, plants, birds, fantastic creatures, scenes from every day life and so on. The beauty of a well-made clay sculpture, irrespective of its outdoor or indoor settings are preserved through many decades, even generations, particularly with a material like stoneware clay that has a well-established record of durability. Actually some of the oldest sculptures on earth are composed of clay.
Just think of the Terracotta Army who was buried with the Emperor of Qin (Qin Shi Huangdi) in 210-209 BC or the Minoan Snake Goddess c. 1600 BC. Although in time the use of clay in sculpting, has had ups and downs, it is still used nowadays to create wonderful clay sculpture items for many decorative purposes. If in the past clay was mostly molded into functional items like plates, mugs or pots, and is molded in a myriad of patterns and styles just for the sake of art and that of art deco.
Stay tune for another post on Sculpturing until then be creative!