Monday, August 31, 2015


Back in 1985 I visited the exhibition; THE WAY OF TEA; AMERICAN ART FOR THE JAPANESE TEA CEREMONY, this was to be my first encounter with chadogu made by Westerners in an earnest fashion and not simply as imitators or copyists. The works were an insight as to how a group of American craftsman and artists saw and interpreted the objects that they studied and admired capturing the essence but not necessarily tied to absolute tradition. Since that time, I have encountered quite a few people whose works are inspired by Chanoyu and these individuals are from all over the globe creating works based on Japanese originals but they are a unique blend of the archetype and the individual. The illustrated Hagi tebachi is just such an object created by Scandinavian transplant and Hagi native; Bertil Nils Persson.  Bertil Nils Persson was born in Sweden in 1940 and ended up working for Royal Copenhagen in Denmark prior to a trip he made to Japan. Once in Japan he began a seven year apprenticeship in Hagi and has been at home there ever since. Highly admired for his decorative and functional work, Persson is considered one of the most popular potters in Hagi and has even received the Distinguished Cultural Service Award (2002) for Hagi City for his efforts to preserve and contribute to the Hagi tradition. I find this to be one of those wonderful vessels that synthesizes the Scandinavian and Japanese traditions effortlessly to make an individual work that is neither a copy nor a simple imitation.
You can see more of this Hagi tebachi over at my Trocadero marketplace by clicking on the link;