About Tansei gamaTansei gama was founded in 1897 by the grandfather of Seiich Onishi.
Although almost all types of pottery were fired in ascending kilns until 40 years ago, electric and gas kilns are much useful, reasonable, and convenient for ceramists to use today.
When the time comes to fire the pottery, the artisans don't sleep until the entire process is completed because they must tend to the fire the whole time.
In addition, many works of pottery that are fired in ascending kilns are much more prone to breaking while being fired, in comparison to pieces fired in electric or gas kilns. Despite the many inefficiencies and risks that come with
using ascending kilns, Seiich Onishi, a traditional Tansei-gama craftsman only fires his items in ascending kilns because he believes that there is a certain essence to his pottery that can only be achieved by using this long-established method.
|Artifact Name||Tanba Tachikui-yaki : ware|
Tanba-yaki is a type of Japanese earthenware, well known for being produced from one of the six remaining kilns ( Seto, Tokoname, Shigaraki, Bizen, Echizen and Tanba) of olden Japan. Its origin stem from the late Heian era to the beginning of the Kamakura era (around 1000 years ago).
The hole type kiln was used until Momoyama era (1568～), but the Korea-type, semiground "ascending kiln" was introduced around 1611. At the same time, a left turning potter's wheel (exclusive to Tachikui Village in Japan) was adopted and is still used to this day. After Tanba Kuitachi-yaki and its craftsmen were patronized by Shinoyama Domain, several craftsmen, Naosaku, Ichifusa, Kayu, and Ichiko, rose to fame. The fierce, yet friendly nature of their competition allowed Tanba Tachikui-yaki to become popular and gain an audience. In 1978, Tanba Tachikui-yaki was designated as a traditional craft by the nation.
|Episode||The artisans at Tansei gama mainly use nandina leaves for their pottery works because these particular leaves are considered to be a good luck charm, turning bad luck into good.|
Clay preparation/Kneading ⇒ Forming/Molding※After forming the pottery, a leaf is delicately placed on its surface, before being glazed.
When fired, the leaf is scorched from the high temperatures of the kiln, leaving behind a leaf shaped imprint on the pottery. ⇒ Triming ⇒ Natural drying (3-4days) ⇒ Bisque firing ⇒ Glazing ⇒ Glaze firing
※When it's time to fire the pottery, the artisans don't sleep until this entire process is completed because they have to tend to the fire the whole time.
The Traditional Craftsman Profile
An ascending kilnAn ascending kiln is a traditional ceramic furnace built along the topography of slopes. The inner workings of the ascending kiln consist of several divided compartments. The process of convenction in conjunction with gravity's natural powers enable the extremely high temperatures within these compartments to constantly keep running. This method allows large quantities of pottery to be fired at the same time. In other words, there are no irregularities among any of the fired products.
YohenWhen pottery is fired in an ascending kiln at 1,300 degrees celcius for 60 hours, it is natural for the ashes from the burning firewood to cover it.
The aftermath of the hot glaze and ashes melding together creates unique colors and patterns on the pottery known as YOHEN. Yohen is one of the most special characteristics of Tanba-yaki. Although Tanba-yaki was created for the daily use of average citizens, their pieces are so well made, that some people enjoy collecting them as fineart.
AkadobeA red clay that is very rich in iron and can be found in the Tanba-Tachikui area. Depending on the temperature of the kiln, the color of the Akadobe clay will vary, ranging from a reddish brown to a deep purple.
Location & Address
■ 丹誠窯: Tansei gama
- Postal code
- 40 Shimotachikui kondacho Sasayama Hyogo
- Reservation is required
- Business hours
- 9:00 - 17:00
- No scheduled