Fira del Fang ( Fiesta of Ceramics ) : 03 March – 11 March 2018
The word `ceramic´ is derived from the Greek word `keramos´ meaning clay and, stretching back many hundreds of years, Mallorca and more specifically Portol was at the heart of ceramics in the Mediterranean.
Specifically, Mallorca was the first place in Europe where Hispanic Moorish pottery was made some 800 years ago.
Mallorca also gave its name to `mayólica´ pottery, decorative tin-glazed pottery which was exported from the island to Italy as early as the 13th Century and adopted by the Italians as their own.
With such a pedigree, it is no wonder that the centre of the ceramics industry in Mallorca, the adjacent towns of Portol and Sa Cabaneta in the Ajuntament of Marratxi, are proud to celebrate with a fiesta each year in early March, the “Fira del Fang” (Pottery Fair) showcasing and promoting the best in ceramics Mallorca has to offer.
Both towns are home to numerous `ólleries´ (potteries) and there is a walking route the ´Ruta del Fang´, which can be followed and which also takes in the pottery museum.
The ceramics produced in the area range from historical to practical everyday ware and more modern and decorative designs.
You will recognise the traditional earthenware cooking pots or “greixoneres”, wide and shallow dishes glazed on one side only and used for soups, stews and of course paella. They come in varying sizes and are emblematic of the red clay found in the area.
You will also no doubt be curious about the ´siurells´, the clay figurines of Mallorca, incorporating a whistle. After firing, they are lime-washed white and painted with splashes of red and green. The origins of these figurines are lost in the mists of time but are uniquely evocative of Mallorca.
So if you are a lover of all things ceramic like me, take the time to go Potty in Pórtol and make the trip to these lovely traditional Mallorcan towns just outside Palma.
Bag yourselves a souvenir, hugely less expensive than in the glitzy shops of Palma and, you don’t have to squeeze them into your carry on, they will be posted on to you!
One of the best stocked and one of the oldest potteries is Ceramica Terra Cuita.
Open every day and happy to show you around.