The Idea

Ceramic and its Dimensions – where cultural heritage inspires future creativity

Wilhelm Siemen, Director of Porzellanikon – Staatliches Museum für Porzellan Hohenberg a. d. Eger / Selb

“The past few decades have changed both Europe and the world. Over the course of globalisation, our lifestyles have changed and are now closer to one another than ever before. Europe has become a place where different cultures have come together by migration from one European country to another. Europe is facing major demographic change. The elderly have special needs and the disabled of our society also need to be included much more.

There are ecological questions, including the sustainability of our economy and resources. Ceramics must rise to these challenges and provide solutions as it is already done in the field of advanced materials. Ceramics is not limited to tableware; it can also be used as an architectural element, as an interior object, and also as a way of solving architectural problems such as heating and air conditioning, combined with a special design value. Thinking about the future of our environment, new ceramic materials previously only used for technical items can be taken to improve other items for a better quality of everyday life.

Since December 2014, a consortium of 24 partners from eleven European nations has been working on the Creative Europe project “Ceramics and its Dimensions”. Over a period of four years, they have carried out a review of the regional and continental status quo, focusing on ceramics and its cultural impact.  A series of actions have taken the historical context, the changes and the socio-geographical conditions of today’s situation into account to inform future views on the development of European ceramics. Also addressing special demographic groups such as disabled people and migrants, the project explores ceramics in architecture and design. It has linked research, science and industry in order to develop modern, sustainable, and ecological products and explored options for advanced applications of ceramics. Further, the aim was to develop and achieve innovation through student workshops held in collaboration with the ceramics industry. Networking was a central issue. Sharing ideas with different people have enhanced individual project elements and led to intensive and long-lasting cooperation beyond the life of the project.

The project focused on ten interlinked modules with the overall aim of understanding the cultural and historical context in order to provide an insight into the future.”