Tetsubin Green Tea Set by Nagai Ken
Nagai Ken's clay creations are a skillful melding of two artistic genres closely linked to Japan's tea culture: cast iron wares and wood-fired pottery.
This distinctive tea pot resembles a miniature tetsubin - the kind of iron kettles used to boil water for green tea. Meticulously handcrafted in minute detail (the knob on the lid swivels), it is a testament to Nagai's exceptional forming skill. The intense heat inside the Tenkū-gama, Nagai's noborigama climbing kiln, produced warm gradations of rust red to dark brown and small pebbles where feldspar crystals have burst through. Swirling embers of red pine fuse with the surface of the clay and produce a natural glaze which is rough yet pleasing to the touch.
The pot is accompanied by two matching cups fired in the same technique. One cup holds a drop of ash which fell from the ceiling the kiln in its molten state and vitrified. It is a wonderful display of the kind of incidental kiln effects that only wood-fired pottery can exhibit.
The pot has a total capacity is 400 ml (13.5 oz.), which is enough to make several cups of tea. Gyokuro is highly recommended.
Functional as well as beautiful, this set promises many memorable tea moments over the years.
View Nagai Ken's Profile | View all works by this artist.