Monthly Archives: December 2013

Japanese Tea Wares

New Year plans –

I have always been attracted to the wares of Japanese ‘country’ potters especially those associated with the tea ceremony. The Japanese sensibilitiy is so different to us in the west. I will be talking about this in future posts and I shall try not to lean too heavily on my readers patience when I do. Because such wares are expensive to make and because of recent developments in economics and fashion in Ireland it is very difficult to sell them here. Potters who do make such wares look to England to place their work since it provides a healthy gallery scene which caters for an enthusiastic collectors  market.

The little teabowl or Unomi below may illustrate this.

This piece was fired in a saggar (a large clay lidded container) into which I put a mix of combustible materials which included pine needles, leaves, copper wire, salt, etc. The purpose is to create a gaseous atmosphere within the saggar that will leave its serendipitous marks on the pot. Such marks were encouraged by the various slips I brushed onto the pot before the first ‘biscuit’ firing. The high temperature and long firing added to the uncertainty of the results means that when a piece ‘succeeds’ it will  be expensive relative to more conventional wares.

I hope to again explore this technique during 2014 in a limited way. My intention would be to put together a body of such work that would merit an exhibition.