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Touching Stone Gallery   Santa Fe, USA

www.touchingstone.com    director@touchingstone.com

 

Tadashi Nishihata

Contemporary Tanba Pottery III   (July 4 - 30, 2008)

 

See more of this artist's work in:

Nishihata's 2003 show  2004 show  2006 show  2008 show  2010 show  2013 show

Tadashi Nishihata  西端正

Nestled in a beautiful valley along the Shitodani River that runs through towering mountains northwest of Kyoto is the picturesque village Tachikui, historically known as Tanba*  丹波, one of the six oldest pottery centers in Japan. The rich ferrous soil in this area has supported generations of farmers and artisans since the Kamakura period (1180 - 1230). Tanba pottery is fired traditionally with wood. The oldest working noborigama (climbing kilns) in Japan are still used here. This serene setting is home of some of the world’s most beautiful ceramics.

Tadashi Nishihata (b. 1948) comes from a family steeped in Tanba pottery traditions. His great great great grandfather Ichifusa was a master potter known for his figurative sake bottles in the late Edo period (early 19th century). Nishihata’s father, Sueharu (b. 1926), is a respected ceramist who has exhibited extensively. The long historic and familial background provides tremendous depth for Nishihata’s life-long pursuit in Tanba pottery.

Among Nishihata’s many achievements, his most significant contribution to Tanba pottery is the re-establishment of an ancient Tanba finish, called Akadobe-yu (red clay glaze). In the early Edo period (1603 – 1867), some Tanba potters applied a certain type of glaze onto their pots to make them water-tight. Their glazed pottery turned a distinctive deep reddish color after firing. Inexplicably, pottery with this beautiful color was made for only 20 to 30 years, after which the method for creating it was lost. For almost four centuries, numerous potters have tried to reproduce this ancient finish without success. Tadashi Nishihata experimented for more than 30 years to re-create the Akadobe-yu finish, using different clay and firing techniques. In 2001, he successfully reproduced the deep chestnut-red Akadobe-yu finish. Nishihata gained wide recognition not only for this accomplishment, but also for his generosity in sharing his hard-earned knowledge with his peers.

Nishihata's other accomplishments include his unique Hai-yu finish, a turquoise-colored glaze made from ashes of the rice plant and different types of wood. Much of his work is inspired by nature. Every winter, wind from the Sea of Japan brings snow to the mountains around Tanba, transforming the valley into a wonderland of frosted rocks and forests. In the spring, melting snow turns rivers and streams emerald, new leaves decorate the drab earth with brilliant green. Nishihata captures the changing seasons using wood fire with as much drama and nuance as a painter using colors. The distinctive surface texture on many of his works is attributed to a unique clay that he discovered some years ago while hiking in a remote mountain near his home.

In 1994, Nishihata won the Grand Prize of the Chanoyu Zokei Ten (Modern Tea Forms) Exhibition sponsored by the Tanabe Museum of Art. In 2003, Nishihata was selected along with three other Japanese tea bowl masters to show in America at Touching Stone Gallery. A year later, Nishihata followed with a successful solo exhibition in the same gallery. In 2005, Nishihata won the coveted Grand Prize of the Chanoyu Zokei Ten Exhibition for a second time. And in 2006, he repeated this feat by winning the same Prize for the third time, thus becoming the only artist who has ever been bestowed with this prestigious award in consecutive years.

The current exhibition at Touching Stone Gallery is a tribute to this exceptional artist. The exhibition includes outstanding examples of his signature Akadobe-yu and Hai-yu finishes, as well as his spectacular unglazed fire-changed ceramics.

* Note Tanba is a phonetic translation of two Japanese characters: 丹 'Tan' (meaning red) and 波 'Ba' (meaning waves). Tanba, or Land of Red Waves, got its name from a kind of red rice grown in ancient time which turned the fields into seas of red. The name is often translated incorrectly as Tamba.

 

Click on images to view selected pieces

Inquiry/order: director@touchingstone.com, see Inquiry/Order

 

 

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Large Mentori Bowl No. 10  w/ Hai-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   17.5"w x 14"d x 9.5"h  (3 views)

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Large Classic Vase Form No. 2  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   15"h x 12.5"w x 12.5"d  (3 views)

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Medium Mentori Bowl No. 27  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   14.5"w x 11.5"d x 8"h  (3 views)

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Medium Mentori Bowl No. 21  w/ Hai-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   14"w x 11"d x 7.5"h  (3 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 1

  wood-fired ceramic   10.5"w x 5"d x 6.5"h  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 20  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   19"w x 5.5"d x 6.5"h  (2 views)

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Incense Burner No. 3  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   5.5"w x 5.5"d x 6"h  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 5  w/ natural ash glaze

  wood-fired ceramic   13.5"h x 9"w x 8.5"d  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 6  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   8"h x 5"w x 5"d  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 7  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic  11"h x 11" w x 11"d  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 4  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   10"w x 9.5"d x 6.5"d  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 9

  wood-fired ceramic   15.5"w x 8.5"d x 9.5"h  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 8

  wood-fired ceramic   11.5"h x 8.5"w x 8.5"d  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 26

wood-fired ceramic   5"h x 6"w x 6"d  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 28

wood-fired ceramic   6"h x 6"w x 5.5"d  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 29 w/ Akadobe-yu finish

wood-fired ceramic   5.5"h x 5.5"w x 5.5"d  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Vase Form No. 11

  wood-fired ceramic   15"h x 4"w x 3"d  (2 views)

Sold   (* 100% proceeds donated to

Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival

in support of the program)

 

 

 

Hanging vase No. 19  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   10"h x 3.5"w x 3"d  (2 views)

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Vase Form No. 18  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

  wood-fired ceramic   16"h x 6.5"w x 6.5"d  (3 views)

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Tea Bowls & Tokkuris

 

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Tea Bowl No. 12  w/ Hai-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  4"h x 4.5"w x 4"d  (4 views)

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Tea Bowl No. 13  w/ Hai-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  4"h x 4"w x 3.5"d  (4 views)

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Tea Bowl No. 14  w/ Hai-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  4"h x 5"w x 5"d  (4 views)

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Tea Bowl No. 15  w/ Hai-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  3.5"h x 4.5"w x 4"d  (4 views)

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Tea Bowl No. 16  w/ Hai-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  5"h x 5"w x 4.5"d  (4 views)

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Tea Bowl No. 17  w/ Akadobe-yu finish  (w/ wooden box)

wood-fired ceramic  4.5"h x 5"w x 5"d  (4 views)

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Tokkuri No. 22  w/ Hai-yu finish

wood-fired ceramic  6.5"h x 3.5"w x 3.5"d  (2 views)

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Tokkuri No. 23  w/ Hai-yu finish

wood-fired ceramic  6"h x 4"w x 4"d  (2 views)

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Fire-changed Tokkuri No. 24

wood-fired ceramic  5.5"h x 4"w x 4"d  (2 views)

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Tokkuri No. 25  w/ Akadobe-yu finish

wood-fired ceramic  6"h x 3.5"w x 3.5"d  (2 views)

Sold