History of Clay

Clay from stone age

01

Paleolithic Era (Stone Age)

Cultures located in Africa and Asia created small clay figurines, vessels for cooking in fires or to storage of food, funeral utensils, and construction in mud buildings. The oldest vessels found so far were from the Jömon period in Japan’s prehistory (10,000 BC – 8000 BC).

Clay structure

02

Neolithic Era (New Stone Age)

Humanity discovered the useful properties of clay

Sumerian civilizations (Mesopotamian region) used clay in the form of tablets as a form of expression. Babylonians erected Ziggurats, palaces and walled cities with sun-dried bricks, covered with other bricks that were baked.

Clay structure

03

From 1,000 years ago

There are still clay structures on the planet built with clay that have remained standing:
Pueblo de Taos (Mexico)
Chan Chan (Peru) (600 AD Beginnings 700 AD)
 AÏt Ben Haddou (Morocco)

Indigenous clay home

04

Latin America

Indigenous people used clay for the construction of houses. They used the “bahareque” or “fajina” type; a housing construction system based on sticks or interwoven canes covered in clay. In Colombia and Venezuela we found examples of this in the typical “bohío” housing.

Home with Santafé tiles

05

TODAY

The construction industry commonly uses materials made of clay, which has generated the technification of the production plants for the manufacture of bricks, pavers, roof tiles, blocks for vertical drilling and horizontal drilling, veneers, and beams.
Thanks to the high quality clay found in Colombia, the use us clay bricks and clay roof tiles is very common and has become the architectural signature of this country.

The city of Bogotá has an architectural identity recognized worldwide by the frequent use of clay bricks. It is a city embellished by brick construction, which was used predominantly in the 50’s and 60’s by architects Fernando Martínez and Guillermo Bermúdez, and more recently by Rogelio Salmona, who led the elite to consider brick as a sophisticated material.

Currently, Bogotá has many emblematic neighborhoods and buildings built in brick. Such is the rise of that trend that today the most important construction works are made with this wonderful material.