Isabel de Plaart

In her studio surrounded by majestic trees on the outskirts of Madrid, Isabel has created most of our tableware. Each unique piece complements perfectly with each of our dishes. It's a surprise and a gift to have her as part of our team of collaborating artists.


Getting Dirty...

Is there still room for the small artisan?

I believe there is, and increasingly so. The value of craftsmanship as a cultural expression that connects us with our traditions is gaining greater importance today. Society demands non standardized products that meet sustainability criteria, which value the quality work, time, and care of artisan production.

The well-designed and executed artisan piece, timeless and durable, appreciates the beauty of the imperfections of manual work that make it unique and differentiate us. A new feeling that humanizes us and advocates for responsible consumption of less and better. Craftsmanship as a value of exclusivity and authenticity.

How to distance yourself from big brands?

My intention with my brand Plaart is to create unique pieces, moving away from serialized and mass-produced products, reinterpreting traditional techniques and styles from a contemporary perspective, and offering a very personal and careful product

Making ceramic pieces by hand one by one with criteria of personal work and exclusivity is an alternative aimed at a buyer profile that seeks unique products, values the work of the artisan, and demands this type of "luxury."

A new luxury understood not as an expensive product, such as a smart washing machine that dispenses the necessary detergent in each wash or a smartphone with three different lenses, but the luxury of handmade work with skill and mastery.


Where does this passion come from?

On many occasions with ceramics, you hear, "I came by chance...", "It was a discovery...". My encounter with ceramics was not at all random; since I was a child, I was fascinated by the potter's wheel, it seemed magical to me, but it's one of those things you leave parked and for years you don't even consider.

My entire professional career has been related to the plastic arts. My artistic training began in Fine Arts at the Complutense University of Madrid, where I specialized in sculpture. That's where my contact with clay began, although more as a means than as an end, modeling in clay the pieces that I would finally reproduce in bronze, resins, or other materials.

After years working in the sector and at a time when my personal situation allowed it, I decided to resume that fascination and I delved into the world of ceramics. It totally hooked me, and I continued my training by graduating as a technician in pottery and as a technician in ceramic decoration at the Francisco Alcántara School of Art. It was during this training stage that the germ of what would later become my ceramic brand PLAART was born.


What inspires you?

This enthusiasm and motivation that led me to start in ceramics, I try to convey it in my daily work. Creating pieces that are not merely utilitarian or decorative, but have depth, inspiration. Evocative pieces that excite us, convey feelings, and awaken sensations.

All my collections arise from an idea, a concept, they are inspired by nature, culture, personal experiences, or people. Themes such as sustainability in the Geo or Stones series, irony in the Bubbles series, or traditions in the Ajuar series where our cultural heritage is valued. Small series or limited editions, always leaving room for the unexpected, for the detail that makes each piece absolutely unique.

I am also very motivated by collaborations where I start with some premises or needs from the client but with the freedom to bring a new perspective. It's not just about enjoying the objects; it's about creating an experience around them.



How long does it take you to create a piece?

Ceramics has its timing; it is a slow process and does not understand haste. Behind each piece, there are many hours of work and effort. It is a discipline that requires a continuous exercise of humility and detachment; often pieces have to be repeated, and you have to know how to detach from those that do not meet quality criteria.

The usual time from start to finish for a piece is about 3 to 4 weeks, but times are difficult to specify, they depend a lot on the characteristics of the piece and the conditions surrounding it, temperature, and humidity...

The following phases could be listed in the realization of a piece: 1- Modeling or shaping phase. 2- Finishing of the piece 3- Slow drying of the piece, usually lasting several weeks and cannot be accelerated due to the risk of cracks and breakage.

4- First biscuit firing, it takes about 48 hours until the kiln can be opened. 5- Glazing of the pieces 6- Second glaze firing, another 48 hours.

7- Review of possible imperfections of the already cooked piece.

8- Packaging

9- Shipping

Additionally, if the piece has decoration on the glaze, it would also include: Application of fats and third-fire cooking.

Where is PLAART currently?

Plaart is a young project, although it has been brewing since the moment I took the first lump of clay, but as it is today, it has only been a few years in the making. Currently, it is a studio where I design products and manufacture them on a small scale, in addition to distributing and promoting them. The fact of channeling everything is very positive because I manage to leave my mark as an artist in everything I do, from the packaging that wraps the piece I'm going to send to the relationship with the client or the photo I upload to Instagram.

At this point where I am, where I already have a good product that represents me and of which I am proud, I can answer for it, for its elaboration, for the technical and creative part; it has allowed me, in addition to marketing my pieces at the particular level, to participate in national and international high craftsmanship exhibitions, collaborate with large institutions, and obtain recognition within the craft world such as the Michelangelo Foundation's Homofaber Guide or the Association of Contemporary Crafts SACo