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Petra on pottery

featuring West German art pottery, Fat Lava and more 20th century ceramics

My name is Petra and since 2008 collecting ceramics has become a serious hobby of mine. I am an art historian specialized in architectural history, but I have always loved ceramics. I never was much of a collector though, until I stumbled upon three hip looking vases in a charity shop. They were all a bit damaged, but they looked really decorative together and cost me almost nothing, so I took them home. They had a number on the base and “West Germany” written next to that. I decided to google up some information on them. The rest is history.

Now, over 500 vases later, I recognize the different stages of collecting. Starting out with buying every piece of (cheap) West German pottery I could get, consequently learning more about them, becoming more critical, buying better pieces and spending a little more money and now with specific preferences both based on taste and (some) knowledge. I am sure new stages will follow and I am hoping to learn al lot more.

This blog showcases my ever growing collection of 20th century -predominantly German- art pottery. Through it I hope to share some of my growing knowledge on this particular field of art pottery. I learn form handling the pieces, visiting specialized forums and reading books about ceramics history and the history of art, architecture and design in general. I am especially interested in the broader context these pieces were part of. The contents in my posts are a combination of my art historical knowledge, my own opinion and associations and information I got from other sources.


Specific sources I use are always mentioned. Because I use the two reference books below on a regular basis for factual information about manufacturers and designers, I would like to mention them here rather than repeating myself constantly in my posts.

  • Horst Makus, Keramik der 50er Jahre Formen, Farben und Dekore ein handbuch (Arnoldsche, Stuttgart 2005)
  • Mark Hill, Fat Lava West German Ceramics of the 1960s & 70s (Mark Hill Publishing 2006)

Other books I haven’t bought yet (it’s a book or a vase….) but are recommendable for those who are interested are:

  • Kevin James Graham, From Spritzdecor to Fat Lava II (2010) on CD
  • M. P. Thomas, Deutsche Keramik und Porzellane der 60er und 70er Jahre (Bad Rappenau 2006)


The pieces I am showing in this blog are all part of my collection, unless mentioned otherwise (hover over the image for info). The images are all made by me (© Petra on Pottery, Amsterdam), again unless mentioned otherwise. The idea is that you can really study the pieces up close in all their glory. For this reason my blog contains super size images. You can download them to your computer for personal, non-commercial use. If you would like to use them in any other way, please contact me beforehand using the contact form below. Please respect my copyrights.


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