Collaboration with Dr Céline Murphy
Vassilis Politakis has been collaborating with Dr Céline Murphy since 2013. Céline is an archaeologist (Trinity College Dublin) whose research on Minoan craft focuses especially on the technological dimensions of the production of peak sanctuary figurines. An important part of her methodology involves chaîne opératoire reconstruction and experimentation. Together, Vassilis and Céline have to date tested a number of hypotheses on clay and slip composition and preparation, figurine modelling, decoration application and kiln firing, by using locally-available and exclusively natural materials and ancient technologies.
As well as directly contributing to archaeological research, Vassilis and Céline’s ongoing collaboration demonstrates the richness of interdisciplinary work, and in particular, highlights how intellectually rewarding and progressive long-standing dialogues between academic archaeologists and professional craftspeople are. Through a mutual exchange of skills and thoughts, Vassilis and Céline aim to continue honouring the creative side of the archaeological profession while showcasing the amount of research and experimentation that ceramic crafts builds on.