This unusual Japanese vintage Kyoto Ware porcelain Raku bowl is made in the shape of a chrysanthemum with 23 molded petals. It is finely hand-molded and shaped with enormous detail in porcelain. In Japan, it was originally made as a kashiki. Kashiki is the name for the item like this most often use in tea ceremonies for serving cookies and desserts and such but may have many other uses. On the fine porcelain bowl an unusual and deep purple- black glaze is used, and it is carefully hand glazed. I did see a porcelain Raku piece by the 14th Master on 'the' Raku site done in the same color. Just gorgeous. It is signed - inscribed on the bottom of the bowl with the historical Raku mark. This is made in Kyoto and is Eiraku made. About 30-40 years old, it is in excellent condition with no cracks or chips. The edges of unglazed porcelain is a naturally occurring phenomenon on porcelain with glaze.
SIZE: Length 6.5 inches or 16.51 cm, Width 5.4 inches or 13.71 cm, Height 2.2 inches or 5.58 cm.
Raku ware or 'Raku-yaki' 楽焼, as it's called in Japanese has a long history in Japan dating back to the 18th century. Raku pottery is one of Japan's cornerstone arts and one that has exploded in popularity all around the world since it was introduced to the West by Paul Soldner in the late 1950s and, to a good degree, by the late British potter Bernard Leach in the 1920s. Raku pottery serves both practical and aesthetic purposes in Japan, and has been manufactured by not only Japanese artisans, but also by the same family that created the Raku technique in the 1700s.
There are various sub-styles of Raku in Japan. These include Chojiro-raku, which is the very mysterious black and red-glazed Raku mastered in the beginning by Chojiro himself, the black Raku pioneered by Shoraku Sasaki called Kuro-Raku, the reddish-brown Aka-Raku, and Koetsu-raku, which is Honami Koetsu's style of Raku. Over the centuries since its creation by the Raku dynasty, many Japanese artists have mastered the art of Raku and created magnificent Raku pieces. Some of these artists studied under the Raku family themselves.
Raku is a type of Japanese pottery that is made using a special process known as the Raku firing process. In this process, the piece is hand-molded instead of being turned on a potter's wheel and is fired at a low temperature. The piece is usually left in the kiln and sometime afterwards thrown into a container with combustible materials such as sawdust or newspaper, which leaves a unique design on each piece. The piece is then dipped in water and left to cool.
Nowadays, Raku Ware is made by many kilns in Japan, and even other countries now. Following is some history which still applies to Eiraku no matter where made. While this is not made or from the actual original Raku family kiln which are very highly valued, it is fine in it's own right, and holds the warm feeling that Raku ware brings.
In Japan, there's an old adage that goes Raku first, Hagi second, Karatsu third. Some of the characteristics of wabi-sabi are simplicity, irregularity, and modesty. The values of wabi reflect the Zen beliefs of the priests who created the concept many hundreds of years ago. Raku has been one of Japan's most cherished art forms for over 500 years now and with its popularity rising worldwide, Raku-yaki plays an important part of the Japanese tea ceremony.
In Japan, one world view that is reflected in much of the artwork of the country is that of 'wabi-sabi'. Simply put, wabi-sabi is beauty through imperfection, incompletion, and impermanence. Some of the characteristics of wabi-sabi are simplicity, irregularity, and modesty. The values of wabi reflect the Zen beliefs of the priests who created the concept many hundreds of years ago.
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