Pottery has been produced in Japan since Neolithic times. Farms commonly produced utilitarian wares with great care as to form. Kilns in six renowned regions (and elsewhere) produced everyday vessels and plates sought after by devotees of Mingei (rustic Japan), and the Zen of cha-no-yu, the Japanese tea ceremony. Early tea masters preferred rough-hewn and high-fired stoneware from domestic kilns such as Shigaraki, Iga, and Bizen, which were the antithesis of the Chinese and
Arita-ware porcelain aesthetic that sought finished and flawless surfaces. Sabi connotes the contemplative aesthetic contained in a simple vessel’s patina of age, coarse surface, or ashen glaze formed by the dynamics of kiln firing itself rather than by a brush.
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