Handmade ceramics have never been more popular and it’s easy to see why. Organic materials and perfectly imperfect finishes are at the forefront of décor and interior design- as people seek to reconnect with nature and themselves.
And there’s no denying Greece leads the way when it comes to ceramics, as this form of art has been a part of Greek culture since antiquity- with Ancient Greeks using ceramics to store oil, water and wine since the Bronze Age.
Led by brothers Efcharis and Nikos Paltoglou, the creators behind Homatino, this stunning studio in Athens goes beyond everyday ceramics. Featuring a wealth of knowledge and experience, thanks to their father Michael, who had a ceramics workshop in the 1970’s and taught them from young- the brothers have now taken over- creating bespoke art pieces that are simple yet stunning. Turning everyday items (think: candle holders, plates, mugs, vases and bowls) into masterpieces- each collection is carefully designed to be used as both dinnerware and décor.
Reminiscent of Ancient Greek artefacts, each item has its own unique character showcasing Efcharis and Nikos’ keen eye for detail and their age-old technique that includes some modern finishes.
“Inspired by clay, a simple raw material, using traditional techniques of the past, however, influenced by the contemporary way of life, we mould by hand, ceramic moulds and shapes which aim to be a part of our lives for the following years,” they explain.
“We are a workshop that got its name from the etymology of the word ‘homatino’ which means made of fine-grained earth (soil) or clay. We chose this name bearing in mind who we really are. A local workshop which chooses to remain true to tradition, crafting ceramic objects, modernizing, protecting and promoting the work of the family business, with respect,” they add.
As a child, Efcharios says he “felt the need to create things with my hands. I expressed this need through clay and from the first moment I felt an overwhelming attraction to this simple material, without knowing of course that it would eventually become my profession.”
Nikos says it was in his adulthood that his “restless nature in combination with my heightened sense for creativity changed pottery and ceramics into one of my most enjoyable interests. After travelling through various parts of Greece and on a search, professionally, in various occupations, ceramics and pottery are what eventually won me over.”
The pieces, which feature organic shapes made by hand – reflect the tones and textures of Greece’s beautiful landscape and rich history and if you are in Kalogreza, Athens, you can visit the brothers’ studio, where you will be able to have a tour and check out the tailor-made pieces up close.
“We approach ceramics in an ‘earthly way’, attempting to create a harmonious balance among form-texture-colour and functionalism, giving it a rawness along with an elegant finish. A basic value is for each piece of ceramic work to send out the message of exemplary design, quality, timelessness and for it to be a part of the daily routine and way of life of each individual.”