Cappadocia potteries receive interest from abroad
Living in one of the touristic spots in the Cappadocia region, Aksaray’s Güzelyurt district, Metin Nalbantoğlu and his son Murat Nalbantoğlu produce potteries, stews and pitchers that receive great demand from Turkey as well as from the United States and Arab countries.
Metin Nalbantoğlu, 50, who has been involved in horseshoeing and saddling for 32 years, took pottery making courses at the public education center seven years ago in order to earn money after interest in his business fell.
Nalbantoğlu, who opened an atelier with his son Murat next to the historic Yüksek Church, began making products such as casseroles, pots, jugs and pottery by processing red soil that he collects from the region with many difficulties like dough.
Making nearly 7,000 products a month and having difficulties with growing demand, Nalbantoğlu now sends his products to many Turkish cities as well as countries such as Saudi Arabia, Libya, Qatar, Iran and the U.S.
Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Nalbantoğlu said the Güzelyurt district was one of the simplest and untouched places in the Cappadocia region, which makes the soil in the region very precious.
“I was working as a horseshoe maker in the past. Then I attended a course and learned how to make pottery using the soil in Güzelyurt. After receiving an education there, I started making pottery on my own. I opened an atelier and now I am producing there. This land’s soil is very precious. Our ancestors used to make cold water pitchers and cheese potteries in this region. We maintain this tradition by making pottery,” he said.
Each soil has unique features
Nalbantoğlu also explained the difficulties in making pottery.
“We dig in the ground in the winter. We take its water and crush it with crushers in the spring to turn it into soil. Then keep it in the pool for two days. We roll it and leave it for fermentation. Finally, it becomes ready for use. The soil used for pottery is different from the soil used for a pitcher. Each soil has unique features. Güzelyurt has all types of soil,” he said.
The potter said they receive orders from many different places. “Our products receive demand from Turkish cities like Mersin, Adana, Hatay, Gaziantep, Kahramanmaraş, Van, Konya, and Ankara. We have also sent products to Arab countries and the U.S. for the last two years. We have difficulty in meeting demand although we produce 6,000-7,000 products a month,” said Nalbantoğlu.
His son said he was very pleased about working with his father.
“I have learned this business from my father. We get up early in the morning and start working. I knead the soil with care and give it to my father after the fermentation process. I love my job very much,” he said.