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The deVOL Journal

Resplendent Raku

13th May 2019

By Sophie Mitchell

We’ve been working on these tiles for a while now, something completely new and different to anything else on the market, and we’re so thrilled to finally be able to introduce them to you. Meet our collection of Handmade Raku Tiles!

Raku Aurora

Raku Georgette

Raku Sienna

Created using traditional Japanese techniques, our Raku Tiles are a riot of colour, texture and tones, with a gloss finish to further enhance the vibrancy and style of the tiles.

Raku is a technique developed in Japan in the 16th century. It was first used to produce hand-moulded tea bowls for use in tea ceremonies in the newly constructed Jurakudai (a lavish palace in Kyoto). The name and style of raku ware has gone on to become very influential in Japanese culture and literature.

Raku is a low-firing process, which involves removing the ceramic from the kiln whilst still extremely hot and quickly transferring it to a special container containing combustible materials. Once the tiles ignite, the container is closed, starting the redox process. This is where the magic of raku happens. The temperature change from the kiln to the container, along with the redox reaction, causes cracking and crazing across the tiles. Cutting off the source of oxygen by sealing them in the container also affects the colour, and the metals contained in the glaze (such as cobalt, iron and copper) react taking on different vivid and varied shades.

We have introduced three tiles to our collection Raku Aurora, Raku Sienna and Raku Georgette.

Raku Aurora – the name of this tile was inspired by the Aurora Borealis. The green, red and blue jewel-like tones which ripple through these tiles reminded us of the beautiful natural light display, where colours dance through the sky. You can clearly see where the tiles have crackled and crazed, giving texture to the glossy surface.

Raku Sienna – these tiles are predominantly a yellow brown colour, moving through to russet and deep shades of red and amber. Sienna (the name comes from the city of Siena in Tuscany where this pigment was first produced during the Renaissance) is a yellow-brown colour in its natural state, and when heated turns to a reddish-brown, which describes the colours in these tiles perfectly! The warmth of these tiles is juxtaposed by the flashes of navy blue, pulled out of the tiles in the textured, crackled finish.

Raku Georgette – these tiles are my favourite of the three (I know, we shouldn’t have favourites!) I just love the delicate shades of pink, pale grey and the touches of silver that gently kiss the burnished white background. They are more subtle than their two sisters, but still just as special. I think the thing I love most about all of these tiles, is that each and every one really is unique, you never know what the magic of raku will produce!

Raku literally means enjoyment – and I think anyone with these in their home would certainly enjoy having them. I just need to find a place to use them in my own home!

For more information, or to order samples of our Raku Tiles, please get in touch with our team on 01509 234000 or email enquiries@floorsofstone.com. We also have them on display at our Cotes Mill showroom.

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