After 27 long years, a family returned home. For Rial Visagie, founder and creative director of the popular Ceramic Factory, this homecoming was just the beginning. Steeped in history and tradition that fills him with pride, Rial set out to honour his heritage.
It started with moving his operation to Clairvaux in Robertson. There he established his headquarters and started a wonderful sculpture garden with Lizamore and Associates. This 200-year-old farm is where Rial’s interesting history began. In the 1800s, a house was built on the property for Balthazar Kloppers, Rial’s great-great-(insert more greats here)-grandfather. Fast forward a few years, to 1930, when the farm’s wine cellar was founded by Rial’s grandfather, Rial Kloppers. Kloppers, launched a semisweet white wine in 1980 called Rialheim, which means ‘Rial’s home’, and was a dedication to its founder and his home.
Clairvaux has been the site where generations of dreamers inspired those around them. The Kloppers/Visagie clan were filled with ambition and pillars in their community. Today, Rial and his family continue that legacy, by bringing their own dreams and ambition to the farm. Thus, June saw the official rebranding of the Ceramic Factory in Rialheim.
So what else has changed?
Fans can expect the same cool ceramics they have come to know and love. Rialheim will still produce designs inspired by their surroundings and will continue their quirky, retro and trendy ranges. For those who can’t make it to a Rialheim Creative Studio there is a brand new online store for all your ceramic shopping needs.
Their headquarters in Clairvaux will become a space of inspiration and collaboration. This is where new locally imagined designs and products will be born. It will become the magical realm of Rialheim-land. Rialheim has also expanded its excellence abroad. You may see their signature ceramics in pop-up store in cities such as Berlin and Amsterdam.
Rial decided to bring back the Rialheim name to honour both his family and their home. So, the next time you see one their signature pieces, you’ll know where their new name came from.