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Ernesto José

Ernesto José Bento Agostinho

Ernesto José Bento Agostinho is one of those potters who was born surrounded by clay. His father, a worker at the Bordalo Pinheiro Factory and in his free time works clay at home, helped by D. Cassilda, his wife; in the Ernesto José workshop, a naughty kid was having contact with that malleable mass that allows to create the most diverse forms. Ernesto José, was born on 11/03/1968, in the place with the highest birth rate in our country, the Maternity Dr. Alfredo da Costa, coming soon to Caldas da Rainha. After the basic education, at age 17, he enrolled in CENCAL, to attend the “Ceramics” course, completing the experience he had already acquired in the family workshop. Ernesto José’s profession is not to be a ceramist; he has been a railway worker for 22 years and in his spare time is dedicated to the inheritance received from his parents. Ernesto José is a continuator of traditional Chaldean pottery, nicknamed phallic. These pieces are either well accepted or detested; some people do not consider them works of art, they are rather tacky, naughty pieces to use in festive situations very special. Of various shapes and of varied sizes, are the pieces constantly connoted with the Caldas da Rainha; jugs or mugs, are glazed pieces inside, thus allowing to contain liquids. Externally they are painted with cold paints. The jars – name usually given to the phallus -, contain at the bottom the female format. Like it or not, these are the most sought after and best-selling ceramic pieces of the so-called brejeira de Caldas. Alongside these pieces there are also the so-called “cordel dolls”, which are also brejeiras pieces, used in malicious moments surprising those who pull the string. Ernesto José creates puppets of twine for all professions, nobody escapes, from the most public profession to the most provocative. Ernesto José receives orders from all over the country, from these pieces created in white clay, originating in the area of Leiria.