Paper Kiln Workshop under the leadership of Mutlu Başkaya at Hacettepe
The paper kiln workshop was held on the occasion of 40th anniversary of Hacettepe University and 25th anniversary of Faculty of Fine Arts on May 19 at H.U. Beytepe Campus under the leadership of H.U. Faculty of Fine Art Member of Faculty Mutlu Başkaya. In addition to freelance artists, 100 people comprising certain members of academic staff and students of Ceramics, Sculpture, Paintings, Interior Decoration and Graphics Departments of Hacettepe, METU, Mimar Sinan, Marmara, Dokuz Eylül, Gazi, Anadolu, Kocaeli, 19 Mayıs and Erciyes Universities participated in the workshop.
Mutlu Başkayalearned that he learned this technique for the first time in 1994 at the paper kiln workshop held under the leadership of Yugoslavian artist BIZJAK ZVONKO in GIOELA SUARDI’s studio in Italy but that this kiln was built by a different technique and was smaller. The origin of the paper kiln may be taken back to the ceramic kilns used by American Indians and also to the similarity with Renn kilns used in production of iron in early 2nd Millennium B.C. Many ceramic fine artists in the world come together organizing workshops where they create their original kiln forms. So, in this workshop, too, Turkish ceramic fine artists meeting with their students and artists in other art disciplines on a common platform, building kilns of different forms, fired ceramic bodies they prepared in advance at 900 C in these fantastic kilns.
While explaining that the preparations for the paper kiln for which participating students spent a lot of effort in this workshop, took approximately a month, that Kınık clay used in building the kiln was first pulverized and paper clay was prepared to be used in the workshop adding water and paper to this powder, Başkaya added that pits were dug and the fire box was prepared at the workshop site one day before the workshop. On the day of the workshop, ceramic bodies covered by wood were placed on grids and a conical cage wire was placed to paste the paper clay on top of them. Finally, 4 layers of newspaper dipped in mud was laid to form 5 layers.
The purpose of the workshop was building a kiln jointly and viewing through the night the visual effect of the union of kiln-fire and enjoy it rather than firing clay. The visual function created by the kilns as a result of the firing which took approximately 12 hours left unforgettable impressions in the memories of participants, overtaking the usage function of the kilns.