Wednesday, May 27, 2015


Refined, elegant, simple and serene yet austere and infused with purpose, this Hagi chawan is the epitome of clarity and as classic a chawan as one is likely to encounter. Made by Juyo Mukei Bunkazai, Miwa Kyuwa (1896-1981) in his 70th year, the bowl is the sum total of his life experience distilled in to a single pot, neither flashy or presumptuous, this chawan speaks in a quiet, even muted voice. Friend and noted 20th century chajin, Sokuchusai Mujin Sosa (1901-1979) inscribed the inside of the box lid for Kyuwa and named this chawan; YAMAZATO, Mountain Retreat, conjuring up the austere and solitary meeting of fellow aficionados having tea out of a bowl just like this. The surface has a softness in its appearance with a slight diaphanous quality where the glaze has created a thicker coat around the mouth which drips down into the body of the bowl while the form curves seductively off the foot creating a wonderful feel while resting in the hands during use and surely to the eye as well. This chawan is indeed simple at a casual glance but there is nothing more complicated than simplicity and like many such pieces it can provide a lifetime of conversation and constant discoveries that few pots can ever manage
"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication." Leonardo Da Vinci

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