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Juko Celadon tea bowl
Kohei Nakamura
[Ceramic + Porcelain ]
Item Number:C12095
Asia Week Hours:
March 15 – March 24, 11 am – 6 pm
except Sunday, March 18: by appointment;
March 26 – April 7, Mon. – Fri., 11 am – 6 pm

OPENING RECEPTION: March 15, 6 – 8 pm

In celebration of Ippodo Gallery NY’s 10th anniversary, the gallery is delighted to announce an exhibition of tea wares by more than 15 contemporary Japanese potters. Ranging from young artists to master craftsmen, the works evoke a wonderful feeling of harmony. The five senses are magnified as you hold a bowl in your palms, with each acting as their own microcosmos.

Ippodo has always focused on the tea-related artworks as a core cultural component of Japan, with tea ceremony and its accoutrements at the center of that ideology. This is the second exhibition of tea wares by these Ippodo artists, as the first was held in 2014. Exhibiting artists include Keiji Ito, Hiromi Itabashi, Kohei Nakamura, Kyusetsu Miwa XII, Chozaemon Ohi XI, Tetsu Suzuki, Shiro Tsujimura among others.

With the unique process of tea ceremony, appreciation for tea wares differs from that of other crafts. Unlike an artwork that is only appreciated visually, tea ceremony embodies beauty and joyfulness, as achieved through contemplation and tranquility. During the ceremony, the bowl is raised with both hands, and the drinker savors the texture of the piece against his or her lips. Reflection on the green color of the tea, the full weight of the vessel, and the shape of the kodai, or the foot of the bowl, all add to the experience of pleasure.

The tea wares are transformed through shape and glaze, the full object ripe with discovery in detail. Each modification, no matter how small, becomes a source of appreciation--a culmination of Japanese aesthetics.

The Japanese tea ceremony was first developed during the Azuchi Momoyama period (1573-1603), with the wabi-cha style perfected by Sen-no-Rikyu (1522-91), which spread widely among the Samurai class. The guest entrance to the tea ceremony room is extremely small and low, forcing the guests to enter on their knees, to oblige the Samurai to leave swords outside. A Samurai valued his sword as highly as his life, so to part with it in order to participate in tea ceremony no doubt created a heightened atmosphere of humility. As such, the small tea room must have offered the Samurai a unique form of freedom, equalizing all who entered.

While the earliest tea ceremonies were restricted to feudal lords and high-ranking samurai, the rituals gradually became popular with the rich merchant class during the mid-Edo period (18th century). Edo-period tea ceremony was characterized by refinement, combining the Zen Buddhism with the Way of the Samurai. From spiritual sublimation across society to the delicate and intensive craftsmanship of utensils, (particularly tea bowls), tea ceremony grew in cultural and ultimately historical importance. At different points in history, a single tea bowl has even been considered more important than territory. A simple tea bowl contains a sense of great presence and infinite power: Microcosms of a great maternal spirit.
Various traditional styles of tea bowl continue today: Raku, Ido, Hagi, Karatsu and Shino are still being created. Japanese potters often dedicate their lives to the creation of the perfect tea bowl. The tea master devotes all his energies to a single bowl of tea to make it a unique encounter, allowing the guest to appreciate the experience through all five senses.

But the sensory experience of the tea ceremony is not merely solitary. The ritual allows for important communication; it joins people together, releasing the boundlessness of imagination to flourish. In a single tea bowl, happiness can be found.

Exhibiting Artists ( alphabetical order ) :

Yasushi Fujihira
Noriyuki Furutani
Hiromi Itabashi
Keiji Ito
Yukiya Izumita
Kyusetsu Miwa XII
Kohei Nakamura
Akio Niisato
Nobuo Nishida
Chozaemon Ohi XI
Mokichi Otsuka
Tetsu Suzuki
Ruri Takeuchi
Shiro Tsujimura
Kai Tsujimura
Yui Tsujimura
Soyo & Shodo Yamagishi
About the Artist
Born the third son of the famous Kanazawa potter, Baizan Nakamura, he initially displayed his exceptional talent through the creation of contemporary ceramics. He caused a sensation in 1983 with an exhibition at New York's Garth Clark Gallery, but following his return to Japan, he began to concentrate on producing traditional tea bowls.

1948 Born in Kanazawa as the third son of Baizan Nakamura.
1973 Graduated from the sculpture department of Tama University of Art.
1979 Award - National fellowship, Agency for Cultural Affairs.
1989 Award - Grand-Prix, Yagi-Kazuo Prize Exhibition.
1990 Japan Clay Work, sponsored by the Japan Foundation (travelling to
Korea, Australia, Indonesia, Thailand)
Crafts Exhibition (Umeda Hankyu Department Store, Osaka; Yurakucho
Hankyu, Tokyo)
International Contemporary Ceramics Exhibition "Changing
Pottery"(Shiga prefectural Togei-no-mori Museum)
Japanese Clay Work "Now" 100 Selections Exhibition (Etoile
Museum, Paris, Mitsukoshi Department Stores, Japan)
1992 International Exhibition of Ceramic Art (National Historial
Museum, The Republic of China)
1993 Contemporary Clay Work <1950-1990> (Aichi Prefectural Museum of
1994 International Contemporary Ceramics Exhibition (Aichi Prefectural
Ceramic Museum)
1996 The Suntory Museum Grand Prize Exhibition'96 (Suntory Museum of
Art, Tokyo)
1999 Contemporary Ceramic Art (The Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Japanese Craft Work "Now" 100 Selections Exhibition (Etoile
Museum, Paris, Mitsukoshi Department Stores, Japan)
Japanese Contemporary Ceramics Exhibition - Movement of Avant-
Garde (Holland)
2004-2009 Numerous shows at galleries in Japan
2010 Solo exhibition at Ginza Ippodo Gallery
2012 Art Crafting Towards the Future (21st Century Museum of
Contemporary Art, Kanazawa)
Solo exhibition at Nomura Art Museum, Kyoto
2013 Contemporary Master Tea Bowl Exhibition (Musee Tomo, Tokyo)

Public Collections

National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo.
National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto.
Yamaguchi Prefectural Museum of Art.
Shiga Prefectural Museum of Modern Art.
Wakayama Prefectural Museum of Modern Art.
Japan Foundation.
Shiga prefectural Togei-no-mori Museum.
21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa.
Nomura Art Museum, Kyoto.
"Japan House" Museum of Modern Art, Argentina.
Everson Museum of Art, New York.
Mint Museum, North Carolina.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.