This classic Kuro-raku chawan (matcha bowl) features a slightly waisted hantsutsu-gata shape and is glazed completely in a deep, featureless black, representing the epitome of the wabi aesthetic as put forth by Sen-no-Rikyū (千利休).
Stamped Enraku Kiln (円楽), which is one of the seals used by Yoshimura Rakunyu Kiln (吉村楽入窯).
One of Japan's most recognisable styles, Raku-yaki (楽焼) or Raku ware was developed by famous tea master Sen-no-Rikyu in the late 16th century. Perhaps inspired by the recently created 引き出し黒 (hikidashi-guro) technique used to produce the Seto-guro style of black chawan, Rikyu collaborated with tile-maker Chojiro to produce a new style of ware for use in the tea ceremony.
Hand-formed from porous clay rather than wheel-thrown, kuro-raku chawan are then bisque-fired, glazed, and then fired individually or in small batches at around 1000-1200°C for 1-2 hours before being removed from the kiln while still glowing red hot. The resulting bowls are very light and porous - imperfect in both shape and construction: an encapsulation of wabi.
Care and Use Instructions
Because of their porosity, raku chawan are very 'soft' and delicate. Before its first use, we highly recommend soaking the entire piece in warm water for 30 minutes, allowing water to enter and tighten the gaps in the clay, before air drying it completely. For additional strengthening, rice water (the cloudy water left when washing rice) can be used, with the tiny rice particles helping fill the gaps in the clay. Be sure not to let the bowl soak for too long as the clay might begin to soften.
For each subsequent use, soaking for a few minutes is all that is needed. At first the bowl will produce a clay odour, but this will disappear with time and repeated use.
Due to their porous nature, raku chawan should only be used for preparing matcha and not for holding any type of food.
11cm (4.3in) - width
8.2cm (3.2in) - height
300ml - capacity
This Japanese item ships from the United States.