Robert Yellin's Japanese Pottery Blog

Greetings from Kyoto, We've just moved our gallery into a magnificent old Sukiya style home located very near the Silver Pavilion; a stunning area and setting for the inspired ceramic art we share with the world. Please visit us if ever in Kyoto or online at and

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Miwa Jusetsu:A Retrospective

This past April 29th 96-year old Miwa Jusetsu once again lit an eternal and magical fire in his Hagi kiln; the flame burned for thirty hours this time around. From that firing 11 new works will be displayed, along with 169 others, in a large retrospective exhibition that will be at the Crafts Gallery, The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, from July 15th-Spet.4th. It then travels to four other locations in Japan (Hagi 10-7/11-26; Fukuoka 1-2/14,'07; Nagoya 2-7/2-18; Ibaraki 4-21/6-24) and for any Hagi fan is surely to be a must visit. I'm also pretty sure an exhibition catalog will find its way to me and will hopefully I'll be able to get copies for anyone interested. Miwa is a living legend and is also known as Kyusetsu XI, taking that name in 1967. Along with his elder brother Kyuwa (Kyusetsu X), Jusetsu helped revive and create classical and contemporary Hagi wares in the early and mid 20th century. He still continues to amaze the Tea world here with his large, bold and brilliant wari-kodai Oni-Hagi chawan. In some estimates he is the greatest chawan maker Hagi has ever known; for reference at exhibitions now his chawan run about six-seven million yen (good rate conversion site here: Anyway, the photo of him seen here was taken this May and he certainly is looking fantastic for his age; they say a cup of matcha a day will do that for you, and having a good work ethic for 80 years. His white-glazes, ash-glazes, wari-kodai split foot, and Oni-Hagi (Devil's Hagi) are four aspects of his work that he's renowned for. The museum's homepage can be viewed here and an article I wrote some years back about Miwa can be read here
Various events and lectures are planned for this exhibition at the museum and include gallery talks, panel discussions and workshops with such guests as Kaneta Masanao and Okada Yu--more details to any who might be interested--and in Tokyo--by emailing me at


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