Informed by his training as a painter at the Zen temple Sanshoji, Shirō Tsujimura is highly acclaimed for his contemporary innovations upon traditional ceramic styles, techniques and forms. An autodidact, Tsujimura displays his formidable skills with this tea bowl, which exemplifies the hiki-dashi-guro (“pull-out black”) type of seto-guro (Seto black) wares. Historically, such ceramics were quickly thrown cylinders placed near a kiln's blast holes to gauge the temperature. Extracted after days of firing, they would then be submerged in water, turning their surfaces pitch black. Intended only as wasters, it is said that the acclaimed tea master, Sen no Riyku (d. 1591), was the first to celebrate the inherent beauty of their imperfect forms by bringing them into the tea room.
Please note: After bidding closes on Artsy, bids on this piece will be transferred and executed at the live auction component of the Japan Society Benefit & Auction on the evening of November 2, 2016.
Image rights: Courtesy of Koichi Yanagi Oriental Fine Arts