The European Route of Ceramics
The success of Europe’s ceramics industry has not just defined the economic development of the regions in which
it is based, but has also produced a heritage, a social history and has contributed to the creation of a strong identity.
Date and countries
Incorporated into the programme “The Council of Europe Cultural Routes”:
Countries: France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom
The European Route of Ceramics invites visitors and tourists to a fascinating journey through space and time. It offers the discovery of a common heritage, intensely outward-looking and inseparable from the early European exchanges, but also deeply anchored in territories. It also reflects technical advances, artistic trends and ideological aspirations of each period of time, from the original use of terracotta to the most contemporary pieces.
The Route aims at creating a European network of local circuits, linking cultural and industrial sites focusing on ceramics (factories, museums, etc.). The idea is to make the ceramic heritage more accessible to European citizens, by promoting a dynamic image of this heritage, both physical, with objects used in several sectors (culinary arts, medicine, architecture, etc.) and intangible, including the know-how and crafts necessary for its production. The itinerary is thus based on the definition of a tourism offer which includes real physical circuits and at the same time a virtual route, promoting imaginary and sensorial approaches linked to ceramics.
The Route is supported by the Urban Network for Innovation in Ceramics network (“UNIC”), established as an association since November 2011 and based in Limoges (France). This network connects 9 partners from 8 European countries, from Turkey to Portugal, and aims to nurture innovative practices enabling to engage in a process of local revitalization and of European-level cooperation, linking not only ceramic cities, but also museums, businesses and schools active in this field.
(Photo: Fountain in Limoges)