The Department of Ceramics and Glass is
one of the oldest departments at the UIAH. The Anglo-Belgian painter and
William Finch (1854-1930) was invited to establish the ceramics curriculum
in 1902. Elsa
Elenius (1897-1967) followed Finch as teacher in ceramic until 1962.
Professor Kyllikki Salmenhaara (1915-1981)
modernised the teaching curriculum in the late sixties. The research on
clays and glazes done by her laid the foundation for the development of
material studies in ceramics.
(b1948) a designer and head of the art and design department of the Arabia
porcelain factory, joined the UIAH in 1987 to lead the ceramics department.
During the following years a glass programme was established and a research
laboratory was founded.
What is the market for graduate students of ceramic
and glass design? Some of the students will be able to set up as ceramic
artists or studio potters in Finland, but as designers they will have to
become international. Information technology and computer aided design
have become the key skills for a designer for industry. When porcelain
factories began developing CAD/CAM technology the same software was immediately
introduced in teaching at the UIAH
The aim of our new research programmes is to tackle
the problems of developing new materials and to introduce new, flexible
technology for ceramic and glass production. The laboratory is focusing
on deepening the understanding of design concepts and encouraging medium
size industry to invest in design. The strength of the research team lies
in its active international network and in its use of the latest information
technology. The designer's point of view and mastery of the whole process
of production, from materials to the end product, will give the department's
projects a competitive edge.