This exquisite guinomi (sake cup) was made by a Japanese potter named Unokawa Kazumasa. Tenmoku literally means the eye of the heaven, in Japanese, and holding a Tenmoku ware is like having a piece of the cosmos in the hands. This kind of pottery was very popular among the Ashikaga Shoguns, who revered these spectacular ceramics, pieces of heaven, and still some of the most difficult to make.
Although small in size, a guinomi is often a gauge of skills for a potter, like the highly spiritual chawan (tea bowl). Though the spiritual nature of the guinomi resides in the beverage it holds, this miniature chawan is still an embodiment of the mastery and creativity of its maker.
Unokawa Kazumasa, born in Nara in 1952, not far from Kyoto, where the Ashikaga clan resided, is a master craftsman of Tenmoku pottery. He never had a mentor and let “the clay, the kiln, the fire and nature be his teachers”. As a true artist, he allows the clay to express itself through him and engages it in a creative dialogue from which are born heavenly gems. Unokawa Kazumasa says: “There are various faces and personalities in pottery, which I see. They reveal themselves to me as I carefully come face-to-face with them.” Unokawa-sensei regularly holds exhibitions in Osaka and Nara, among other Japanese cities. And he was even made an honorary citizen of Santa Cruz, after an exposition there, in 1988.
The guinomi is signed, in perfect condition and will be shipped in a signed wooden box (please allow for a few weeks for the box to be made and signed).
Dimensions: 8 cm x 5 cm (3.2 in x 2 in); weight 80 g (2.8 oz)
More pictures available on demand
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