I bought a really nice sake cup (Guinomi) from the potter who made it.
I’d like to introduce it.
This sake cup was made from the clay of the Karatsu region.
Its main characteristic is a cloudy straw ash glaze.
This sort of pottery is called Madara-garatsu.
In particular, I like the puddle of cloudy glaze at the side of this sake cup.
I don’t know why, but it is said that Madara-garatsu makes sake more tasty.
Actually, I feel like that.
However, I think that all great pottery makes sake more tastier.
Madara-garatsu is a kind of Karatsu ware.
Karatsu ware is pottery that has been made in the northwestern Kyusu region.
Today, Karatsu ware is considered to be representative of Japanese pottery.
It has been made since the 17th century.
After Hideyoshi’s invasions of Korea, known as the Bunroku-Keicyo War (1592 – 1598), many Korean potters came to Japan.
They started pottery making in that region. They brought various pottery-making techniques to this region.
It was the beginning of Karatsu ware.
In particular, tableware and teaware are the main types of pottery that have been made.
Karatsu ware doesn’t have brilliance like “Imari ware”, but its rustic appearance is very attractive.
This is my unfounded conjecture, but Madara-garatsu might have been created by chance.
I think that an ancient potter tried to make pure white pottery, but it was discolored into an uneven white color in a kiln somehow.
It might have been a complete failure for the potter.
On the other hand, not a few people were attracted to it.
In this way, Madara-garatsu started gaining people’s attention.
Its particular beauty must have appealed to the aesthetic senses of old Japanese people.
So, Madara-garatsu has been loved by many dilettantes, and it is made even today.