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KONSTANTINOS PODOTAS (Greece, Sifnos Island, Artemonas 1850-1932 / act: Platys Gialos)

Konstantinos Podotas The ceramist Konstantinos G. Podotas, was an intellectual artist because his works are very fine. He was born at Artemonas of Sifnos Island in 1850 and died - without ever leaving his native land - at Platys Gialos in 1932 at the age of eighty-two. He married Maria G. Zamaria, who originated in Constantinople. According to tradition the couple had nine children, of which four boys - Antonis (heir of his father's pottery in 1921), Fra (collaborator of Antonis), Georgaras (naval merchant of ceramics), Nikos (founder of a pottery in Heraklion) - became involved in pottery.

A series of anthropomorphic vessels made of glazed and fired clay are still preserved today at the Folk Art Museum of Signos and in some of the island's houses. The first anthropomorphic vessels, along with lamp stands, wine coolers, flasks, and plates decorated with grapes, were transferred in 1900 to Sifnos from Çanakkale (Dardanelles) of Asia Minor.

The first intellectual ceramist of Sifnos was Georgios Zamarias, grandfather of Flora Zamaria-Vlastardi, founder of the old pottery at Platys Gialos, and father of Maria Zamaria, wife of Konstantinos Podotas. This pottery was at Platys Gialos of Sifnos in the place of the present hotel 'Platygialos', ex 'Xenia' and ex 'Yannoulis Loukataris Pottery'. After 1900 the Zamarias and Podotas potteries began to produce anthropomorphic vessels, which were stamped on the rear with their intitials - "GZ" in the first instance and "KP" in the other. The hands of Zamarias and Po dotas made excellent moulds, that were wanted in various places even outside of Sifnos. A part of their reproduction was continued by Antonis Podotas, son of Konstantinos, and finer still by Yannoulis Loukataris. When the Podotas Pottery seized to operate in 1955, it yielded a number of unkept moulds, which related to the reproduction of lamp stands with faces - such as Angel; Caryatid; Euphoria; Mistress; and Maiden of Athens - which are now displayed at the Folk Art Museum of Sifnos in Apollonia. In closing, Antonis G. Troullos is mentioned, whose contribution threw light on the history of pottery on the Island of Sifnos.

[Megakles 08/2007]

BIBLIOGRAPHY:
TROULOS, ANTONIS G. Pottery on Sifnos Island 1991 Art and Tradition Editions, Sifnos [GREEK]
SPATHARI-BEGLITI, ELENI The Potters of Sifnos Island 1992 Arsenidi Editions, Athens [GREEK]

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