Perhaps the ultimate destination of everything material is to break. And the superb tenacity, immersed in infinity, cannot avoid the inexorable temporality that hangs over it. Possibly the human scale invites us to fear breaks, because there are other larger scales that from our finite existence seem permanent. But is something? We are not even sure that the Universe itself is and arrogantly pretend that something of ours can be. For this reason, fragility should only be a measure of the duration of things; not a defect but the destination by default, which only depends on the clock and everything comes to it. Something to recognize and embrace, because it is our fate.

The ceramic bowl, we all know that it will break; that is part of the life of every object. It could sit unused and cared for for thousands of years, but then would it be a bowl or just a concave-shaped decorative object? Not because it is going to break we are going to prevent it from fulfilling its function and snatch its essence. It will be a good bowl for the time that corresponds to it.

However, compared to other more tenacious materials, the high fragility of ceramics has something that, far from shortening its existence, brings it closer to immortality. Because unlike what is tenacious, which supports innumerable deformations before breaking —changing its shape—, what is fragile breaks easily, but each of its fragments retains its original shape, and can be recomposed with the appropriate adhesive, whether they are nails, precious metals or a humble tail. That is why today we can enjoy the precious ceramics of the Classical Period. And also for this reason one of the most exquisite ceramics in the world are repairs using kintsugi. Even with techniques like the trencadís one gives a new and splendid life to previously unconnected broken pieces. Because well understood, fragility empowers us and elevates us.

Top image: Liebermann, M., 1902. Simson und Delila . Oil on canvas, Städel Museum.