Yuteki Tenmoku and Yama Chawan

Tenmoku is a type of ceramic first created at a kiln called Jian’yao in China during the Southern Sung period (12-13th century). Every Tenmoku ware, including the Yuteki Tenmoku which looks like oil spreading on the surface of water, is overwhelmingly beautiful in their perfection and sophisticated form. In an attempt to reflect the dignified atmosphere of Tenmoku in my own ceramic works, I have conducted thorough research on classical Tenmoku and porcelain. This has been my lifework.

TEA BOWL (Yuteki Tenmoku)
National Treasure
Stoneware with “oil spots” and iridescent luster on tenmoku glaze
Southern Song dynasty, 12th–13th century
Jian ware
The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka
Gift of SUMITOMO Group (The ATAKA Collection)
Photographs: MUDA Tomohiro

On the other hand, I am also fascinated with other miscellaneous styles such as the ones fired without glaze and Yama Chawan. These forms of pottery were never recognized as anything special but rather were considered just for ordinary daily use. However, I can’t help seeing the profound beauty in their healthy and simple appearance, as if they were born naturally, and feel they should be considered as the origin of all earthenware.

My challenge is to embody these two magnificent yet quite different styles of ceramic into one as my own work.