I was first introduced to materials that were Authentically Terracotta during a trip to Florence, Italy. In the early ’80s, the Impruneta area offered a wonderful array of classically produced terracotta tiles that still linger in my imagination. Since then, that area continues to serve a solid niche in terms of architectural, natural, authentic Terracotta products.
Subsequently, a visit to Barcelona brought to my attention the terracotta tile produced by a small, but a very intense family business. Similar to the dense material from Impruneta, a key feature of this Catalan material was its density and hard-wearing characteristics.
Fast forward to the Fall of 2017. Let’s focus for a moment on the iconic terracotta selection of Country Floors. Long known for authentic terracotta tile, in fact since 1964, when this company essentially pioneered this category in the United States. Mr. Norman Karlson founded Country Floors as an avid connoisseur, collector, and author interested in historical tiles. During his travels in Europe as a professional photographer, he admired the beauty and artistry of tiled walls and floors everywhere he went. The terracotta usage around the Iberian Peninsula was one of many elements that caught his eye.
Take a look at the very top of this post and you will see the Fiesole Collection and then immediately above the Pedralbes Collection. Both are from current Country Floors programs. A word here about authenticity. The commodity portion of the wall and floor covering market offers many items that generate a “terracotta visual”. Naturally, these items have their place. However, the effort here is to provide ideas on materials that are Authentically Terracotta, such as the Reclaimed Terracotta below.
This post has been a labor of love and an ode to a timeless material. As always, thanks for reading.