Iznik is a historical city which is the host of Roman, Byzantine, Selcuk and Ottoman Empires and is widely recognized by its tiles as well.
THE AIM OF BLUE TILE & CERAMIC COMPANY [MAVI ÇINI & SERAMİK İŞL.
First of all, we want to take part in the process of reproduction of Iznik tiles and ceramics in 21. century, after having been stopped their production in 18. century and dissappeared without leaving any written document.
We want to make production in traditional methods with conscious of our responsibility to inherit this historical and cultural heritage to the future generations.
GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS OF IZNIK TILES
The most brilliant period of Turkish Tile art was between 15. and 18. centuries. The tile works which were produced in Iznik became most precious assets of the world museums.
Iznik tiles are known as “the ceramics its production is impossible” in ceramic literature because they includes high rates of quartz (SiO2) in its composition.
Iznik tiles are made up four layer.
1: Body (Masse)
2: Undercoat/Underglaze (Angop)
3: Ornamentation (Design and Painting)
These four layers are intricately tied each others. To avoid any kind of deformation, serious and very technical labour is needed.
1: BODY (MASSE)
To facilitate of holding and malleability of the powder of quartz which is 80-85 % of the mixture, fusing/melting glass is added. The tile slabs which is shaped by hand in wooden moulds is left to natural drying for 20-25 days, then they are retouched and undercoated/underglazed.
2: UNDERCOAT/UNDERGLAZE (ANGOP)
It is a mixture whose composition is near the composition of the clay it covers, only it is tiny and fired as white.
The fluid underglaze is poured over and covers the dry slabs. After leaving to dry for seven days, slabs are carefully fired (bisque firing).
3: ORNAMENTATION (DESIGN AND PAINTING)
After transferring the prepared designs as templates on the bisque slabs, these designs is drawn and painted on with metal oxide and other pigments which can be applied on the underglaze and keep the colours under the glaze; composition of the paints used for tiles reflex the colours of precious stones on being formulated as the closest to the original one to preserve its vividness.
The root of some motifs used in Turkish art are based in 9. century. The motif of HATAYI which is originated in China Turkistan completed its development in 16. century. We have seen the most beatiful examples in the classical period thanks to Turkish tribes as in the other motifs in RUMI compositions. Among the main motifs of our ornamentation art are “cloud” stylizations, figures of animals, different objects, naturalistic flowers, geometrical designs. Artists expressed the tracts of social life and beliefs and gave them different meanings as well.
For example, with the belief that the odour of our Prophet’s body is roses’ allowed to use the designs of rose and bud as the symbols of love and beauty. Besides, as the word of tulip in Ottoman Turkish has the same letters with ALLAH, a flower blossoming out a bulb implies the oneness of ALLAH and a tulip implies the spirit searching for ALLAH. The flowering trees in spring implies the HEAVEN, cypresses implies the patience.
Iznik Tiles are used in the most important parts of mosques and palaces and in the architecture with its both physical specialities and richness of design and application. Designs are generally symbolized by rich Iznik flora and fauna.
The glazes used in Iznik tiles are sometimes glossy and sometimes half-glossy and matte. These diffences generally depend on the temperatures of the oven during the firing. The magic of the Iznik tiles and other products of ceramics which is appreciated by all of the world and kept its value up till present comes from its clay, glaze, paint, and chracter of design.
Therefore, IZNIK TILES:
Because of the pourous body, it allows to breath of walls;
Because of the reflexiveness of its glaze, it allows the distribution of sound homogenously;
Because of the brightness of the glaze layer, it allows the absorbtion of the light and emergence of the colours vividly.
It provides heat isolation making buildings cool in summer and hot in winter;
It allows the places to be seen high and roomy.
As the metal oxides used in the composition of paints are made of half-precious stones, it is among the most important urban, historical and cultural inheretence which can be left to next generations.