CFART: Paradise of Clay Home Décor Items

With potter’s wheel, craftsmen produce marvellous handmade decorative items bearing inspiring messages. 

Home decoration fondly referred to as décor, is taking a different turn in the artistic sector. It is common for event organisers to carryout impeccable decoration in order to entice sponsors for subsequent funding while presenting financial balance sheet on how well the previous money was spent. Today, décor has also taken a centre stage in homes and offices with clay used to produce fine ceramic decorative items. Craftsmen and women in Cameroon have advanced in pottery making more sophisticated items with well treated local clay. From Bamessing in the North West Region, through the West Region to the Littoral, fine clay works are made including beautiful flower jars. One of the enterprises, that produces decorative items from clay, Centrel de Formation Artistique Professionelle, CFART, also trains youth that are given attestation of training after three years. They produce quality items with clay and adds value to the items while sending out inspiring messages through painting. Some of the messages includes unity, development, reproduction, justice, dressing, vegetation and the universe where God watches over all. Chatting with the Director of CFART, Kamdoum Benoit Valery, he made known that the training centre that has been producing decorative items for six years now mostly produce decorative pots, flower jars, musical instruments, smoking pipes, religious images, wall and table plates, human and animal portraits and toys with fine clay from the deep see and wetland. The craft work is done with different colour clay including grey, blue, black and red. “The colour of the clay depends on the zone it is mined and we buy from deep-sea divers and wetland dwellers. We get a kilogram at between FCFA 800 and FCFA 1,000 depending on where they got it,” he mentioned. The clay is used to produce any decorative item that one can create in the mind. With the potter’s wheel, the training centre that started with some four trainers and less than 10 interns can produce between 200 and 300 decorative wall and table plates. Moulding the items is not difficult but decorating with painted messages that speaks takes a lot of time. This explains why the ceramic work done with fine clay is expensive. A normal size decorative plate for the wall is sold at FCFA 18,000 while a well decorated flower vase cost between FCFA 10,000 and FCFA 100,000 depending on the size and the decoration type. The items that are sold in and out of the country will soon generate income to many since the training centre will soon go operational as an artistic university.

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