Kuro-Raku Chawan by the 14th generation Kakunyu Kichizaemon (1918-1980) enclosed in its originally signed and sealed wooden box. The inside of the lid bears an appraisal of the the 13th Iemoto (tea master) of Omotesenke, Sokuchusai (1901-1979). He named the Kakunyu Chawan 'han chiru', which can be translated as 'April moon appearing'.
This Raku chawan is particularly endowed with a structural power deriving from simple composition of features of a bowl, even though no distinctive trimming traces are visible. The veil glaze, which is flowing down on the body, is beautifully effective.
There are some little lacquer repairs on the inside of the bowl which do not diminish the beauty (please see pictures 9 and 10). Water does not leak.
Size: 8,3 cm height x 12,2 cm in diameter.
Traditional Japanese Raku was developed the 16th century by Chojiro for use in the Japanese tea ceremony. From Chojiro’s time, there has been a succession of true Raku masters, whose duty it is to carry on the tradition. According to the custom, this line of Raku masters are the only ones entitled to call their ware ‘Raku’, however other potters around the world practice the technique none-the-less. The current Raku master is Raku Kichizaemon the 15th.
Traditional Raku is hand formed, not wheel-thrown. The sides and feet are shaven or cut with a knife or spatula, resulting in a distinctly individual form. The pieces are bisque-fired, and glazed with a low temperature lead glaze. They are then quickly refired and removed from the kiln with tongs while glowing hot.
Legend has it that the name ‘Raku’, which means ‘enjoyment’ or ‘pleasure’ came from a stamp given to the second Raku master Jokei by Emperor Toyotomi Hideyoshi. Hideyoshi was a connoisseur of Raku wares and had the stamp made because Jokei used a clay called 'Juraku-zuchi', which was dug from the emperors Lustgarten 'Juraku-dai'.