Prospect in english

Ceramics studio   Imke Splittgerber

Feuerspuren – Traces of Fire

Ceramics out of smokefire and woodfire

From the beginning I was fascinated by simple and clear forms, but with the throwing on the wheel the types of forms are limited. In 1999 I met Paulus Berensohn (author of "Finding one's way with clay") and he showed me the great variety of forms you can accomplish by pinching.

I start all forms from a ball of clay and they grow in an alternating process of being pinched and letting them dry to their final form. The ball of clay can already exist of different coloured clays, so that the final colour and pattern show while pinching. Other pieces are smoothed and polished with a special stone and then fired in a smokefire with sawdust, different natural materials (like seaweed and rosebuds) and colouring salts.
The pieces with coloured clays are fired either in an electric or in a woodfired kiln (ceramics oven) at 1260°C. In my woodfired kiln I also fire pieces with ash-deposits and salt-traces.

For pinching you can use many different clays or even porcelain. I love to experiment with all these materials and also to give the fire element a part in the final result. So the total process is a cooperation between the elements earth/water and fire/air and my dialogue with them.

In the pinch technique I can also produce tableware like cups, teapots, bowls, containers and goblets for drinking wine.


1967 - 1972 Teacher education for middle school.
1973 - 1977 Studies at the art college in Kiel (Germany) with Johannes Gebhardt and Jan Koblasa, received a Design diploma.
1977 - 1978 Studies at the art university in Stuttgart (Germany).
1978 - 1986 Own studio in Berlin together with Jimmy Clark (1987-2000 Director of the Clay Studio in Philadelphia, USA) and others. Member of Bund Bildender Künster (BBK) and Art Craft Association in Berlin. Participation in Messe Frankfurt on the Main and in different exhibitions and competitions.
1981 Received the permission to teach apprentices.
1989 Start of a new studio in Mühlacker-Mühlhausen (Germany).
1999 / 2001 Multiple trips to the USA to study with Paulus Berensohn (author of the book "Finding one's Way with clay") and afterwards more engagement in giving workshops and teaching at schools.
Since 2003 Proofreading for various ceramic books. Many solo and group exhibitions internationally.
2009 Member of Bundesverband Kunsthandwerk (BK).
2012 Nomination for the federal state art award of Baden-Württemberg.
2014 New studio in Schleswig-Holstein (Germany), member of Berufsverband Angewandte Kunst Schleswig-Holstein e.V. (BAK-SH), Walter Gebauer Award (Bürgel).
2017 Member of Flensborg Fjords Kunst & Kulturforening (FFKK).