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Sgraffito, (from the Italian sgraffire, or scratched, also written as Sgraffiti as plural) is a visual arts technique used in ceramics, pottery, painting and glass in which a top layer of surface colour is scratched away to reveal another colour underneath.

Sgraffito wares were produced by Islamic potters and was a technique widely used in the Middle East. Sgraffito as architectural adornment can be seen on the surfaces of German and Bohemian buildings dating from the Renaissance.


  • Lamb, J. "'Scratching the surface': an introduction to sgraffito and its conservation in England." Journal of Architectural Conservation. Vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 43-58. Mar. 1999
  • Walker, Bethany Joelle. "The Ceramic Correlates of Decline in the Mamluk Sultanate: An Analysis of Late Medieval Sgraffito Wares." PhD dissertation U. of Toronto [Canada] 1998. 446 pp. DAI 2000 60(10): 3562-A. DANQ41525

Fulltext: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses