Meet Rosa, our neighbor, friend and cook. She also participates in a long-time local tradition of hand pottery. She’ll teach you when you come out to Pura Vida House in Guancaste, Costa Rica!
The entire process takes up to a week. She first must go down into one of the many rivers in Paso Hondo, and collect two types of sand and dried clay.
Then, at a very un-Guanacaste-like precise time of morning or afternoon (when the sun is right), she mixes these ingredients with the right proportion of water that it seems only the locals can calculate based on air humidity, temperature and sunlight.
She kneads the clay to the right consistency, and forms it either into what she needs (plate, pot, vase), and her hands have learned to smooth the clay to perfection.
Then she lets the clay dry to the right consistency, and fires it over an open flame.
This has been the process here in Guanacaste and must of Costa Rica for hundreds of years.
Each artist (like Rosa) and Each town (like Paso Hondo) have their own styles of pottery. Some paint it, some leave it crude. Some make it out of utility (free dishes when perhaps money is scares) and others sell it at market.
If you want to make some of your own Paso Hondo hand pottery at Pura Vida House with us, call us any time. We’re here waiting with Rosa!
– Jorge Morera and Stephanie Morera