RAKU WARE – One of the Most Traditional Japanese Ceramics –

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RAKU WARE – One of the Most Traditional Japanese Ceramics –
Jul 1, 2017(sat) – Sep 24, 2017(sun)  
Hours: 10:00 ~ 16:30(entry up to 30 minutes before closing.)
Closed: Monday (Open: if the Monday is a national holiday) 

Adults ¥900
University students ¥700, High School students ¥400,
free admission under Juniour High School students



Raku Museum
Access: 84 Aburanokôji Nakadachi-uri agaru, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto,
602-0923, Japan 
Tel: 075-414-0304
Hours: 10:00 ~ 16:30
(entry up to 30 minutes before closing.)
Closed: Monday (Open: if the Monday is a national holiday)


Japan is rich in numerous ceramic traditions each varied with distinctive characteristics and beauty.
Raku ware, above all, are extremely unique and incomparable with any other in how they were born, how they are made and fired as well as how the tradition has been transmitted.
It was Raku Chōjirō, a ceramic maker, who made Raku ware for the first time when Oda Nobunaga was a powerful ruler who attempted to unify Japan about 450 years ago. Raku tea bowls were born specifically to ‘serve matcha’, green powder tea, and aesthetically designed for to embody wabicha, the wabi philosophy of tea, which is the style of tea associated with the aesthetic sense of rustic simplicity, perfected by Sen Rikyū, a tea master who inspired Chōjirō
to encapsulate this philosophy within a tea bowl.
Since the founding father, Chōjirō, the Raku tradition has been handed down across Raku successive generations over to the current head, 15th generation Raku Kichizaemon.
How this long-lasting Raku tradition has been handed over from one generation to the next is a matter of great interest. Father never teaches his son any know how to make tea bowls nor how to prepare the glaze compounds. Neither to copy nor to reproduce the work by their predecessors but to find out the individualistic manner of his own expression to be able to confront them: that has always been the Raku family’s principle kept unchanged.
Raku Kakunyū XIV left meaningful words, saying ‘Tradition is not to follow in the footsteps of your predecessors but to live now and build your own world’.
The Raku firing method is also unique. A single bowl is placed inside a saggar to which the hand-operated bellows are attached to blow air into the kiln to raise the firing temperature. When the bowl is still candescent it is removed from the kiln and is replaced by another bowl soon after to follow the same procedure of firing.
This particular firing method walks alone in its own way and it has been slightly transformed and introduced by potters all over the world to become known as ‘American Raku’ and the like, opening up the boundary.
This summer regular series features a black Raku shallow tea bowl named Okinoshima by Chōjirō I, a black Raku shallow tea bowl named Enji by Dōnyū III, as well as red Raku tea bowl from the series of 70 bowls to commemorate his 70th birthday by Ryōnyū IX, showcasing various evocative expressions found in Raku tea bowl. Tools used for Raku firing are also on display so that the visitors could handle them to come closer to the core of the question, what is Raku.

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