Roman Arretine ware, red slip earthenware, mold-made footed bowl, 1c BCE-1 c CE
Stemmed bowl, krater, Roman, from Arezzo. Earthenware, red gloss ware, decorated in relief with rows of beads, wreaths, rosettes and figures which represent the seasons. Signed by potter Cb. Ateius. Height 18.7 cm.
Red Gloss Wares: begin with Augustan/Imperial age, influenced by Hellenistic designs (figures in relief, scrolls, garlands, floral designs—black-slipped Megarian ware), often produced by Greek workers (have signature seals, industry records). Red gloss slip easier to fire than black—called terra sigillata—from sigillum (seal)--stamped designs. As with Greeks, made elaborate embossed and incised molds from plaster and fired clay—threw clay inside molds, feet, rims etc. added separately.Roman factories were able to impose standardization through the use of fine, calcareous clays that fired to a consistent quality over a range of temperatures ranging from 850-1050 degrees C common to wood fired updraft kiln. The decoration was achieved through impressing the designs onto the interior of a mould, and the vessel was then thrown in the mould which was mounted on a potter's wheel. This production technique allowed vessels to be produced uniformly in large numbers, usually by workshops in which ten to fifteen potters worked simultaneously.Glossy surface is achieved by use of a very fine slip oxidized to sealing-wax red. Micrograph of sherd of Eastern Gaulish sigillata shows open, partially-vitrified body and vitreous slip. The two adhere well with the resulting tough “non-stick” surface that made this ware popular for the table. (PMCT p.191)