Friday, June 12, 2015

Handmade Culture: Raku Potters, Patrons, and Tea Practitioners in Japan

What I have learned about Korean Buncheong ware and its influences upon Western Studio pottery has been remarkable.   Raku has also left it's imprint.    The potters and patrons who made raku were the first Studio potters, dating back over 400 years.    Morgan gives a historian's view of the tradtion, which is not what the tea and raku people present which is more legend than history.   I highly recommend this book.

 Raku potters, like myself, were urban potters firing small kilns, often inside a small building.    They lived close to their customers and patrons, unlike people firing large wood kiln in the countryside.  This intimacy allowed the potter and patrons to work together to create a tradition.

Handmade Culture: Raku Potters, Patrons, and Tea Practitioners in Japan
Author: Pitelka, Morgan;

Categories256pp. October 2005
Paper - Price: $31.00ISBN: 978-0-8248-2970-4
Handmade Culture is the first comprehensive and cohesive study in any language to examine Raku, one of Japan’s most famous arts and a pottery technique practiced around the world. More than a history of ceramics, this innovative work considers four centuries of cultural invention and reinvention during times of both political stasis and socioeconomic upheaval. It combines scholarly erudition with an accessible story through its lively and lucid prose and its generous illustrations. The author’s own experiences as the son of a professional potter and a historian inform his unique interdisciplinary approach, manifested particularly in his sensitivity to both technical ceramic issues and theoretical historical concerns.Handmade Culture makes ample use of archaeological evidence, heirloom ceramics, tea diaries, letters, woodblock prints, and gazetteers and other publications to narrate the compelling history of Raku, a fresh approach that sheds light not only on an important traditional art from Japan, but on the study of cultural history itself.
54 illus., 3 maps