I was going to include our ceramic stoneware garden sculpture under the heading Stone, but I was quite rightly overruled by the artists! Although there is a cross-over point, the skills and approach are so different. With stone, you start large and cut it down, with clay start small and then build it up.
So what exactly does the term Ceramic Stoneware mean. ‘Ceramic’ is the word that refers to ‘pottery’. Pottery is the art of making pottery wares, using earthenware or stoneware. Earthenware and Stoneware differ partly in the type of clay used, but mainly in the way they are fired. The earthenware is fired at a low temperature and so remains porous (think of a typical flower pot) whereas Stoneware is fired at a very high temperature, making it non-porous, hard and impermeable. Often greyish, brownish in colour due to impurities in the clay.
Although both stoneware and porcelain acquire their identity through vitrification at high temperature, porcelain is less opaque and more translucent than stoneware, making it more suitable for use in china making.
But why not just look at the beautiful handmade pieces of ceramic stoneware garden sculpture and enjoy them for what they are and not what they are made of!