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

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Sad News; Another Giant and gone.

Yet the stellar work remains forever; Tsuji Seimei, R.I.P. What a great man and potter; more photos next week, in Japanese here:

Tsuji Seimei was one of the greatest ceramic artists in all of Japanese history! He started potting as a teenager and continued firing up until last year. His works embodied all the good in Japanese ceramic art and spirit. A few articles I wrote can about Tsuji can be read at
I met him many times---yet only visited his home once--and he was always gracious and warm; we once went to Mishima's famous Zen Temple Ryutakuji together with his wife and also wonderful potter Kyo to view the annual hanging of the scrolls. Afterwards we had lunch at Mishima's also famous unagi restaurant Sakuraya. In his day Tsuji was a heavy sake drinker--known as the 'Yokozuna of the East' (Fujiwara Ken was the Yokozuna of the West, Tsuji's shuki are the best!) and thus it's no surprise that he passed away on April 15th from liver cancer at the age of 81. What more to say; a lone wolf potter, who had a deep-profound understanding and appreciation of Japanese art from all of history, is gone. Long Live Tsuji's spirit and his timeless art!