Ishikawa Teru Unzen Fugen-dake Tenmoku Guinomi

Potter: Ishikawa Teru

Approximate size: W 2.8″ by H 1.7″ or 7.2 by 4.4 cm

This stellar tenmoku guinomi or saké cup was made by Ishikawa Teru, head of the Kujaku kiln. Its foremost point of appreciation, the copper red transmutation glaze is made with volcanic ash from Fugen-dake and is affected by the firing (this aspect or characteristic is called ‘yohen’), influenced by the kiln conditions of the firing stage. Its outcome can vary from red to purple with a unique viridian green sheen inherent in the final glaze. Fugen-dake is the name of the highest peak of Mount Unzen, which is located nearby. Mount Unzen is a group of active volcanoes on Kyushu Island, situated near the city of Shimabara.

“Tenmoku (天目, also spelled “temmoku” and “temoku”), is a type of Japanese pottery and porcelain that originates in imitating Chinese stoneware Jian ware (建盏), of the southern Song dynasty (1127–1279), original examples of which are also called tenmoku in Japan”.

Even after the move from the Shoin Karamono style of tea ceremony to the Wabicha Soan style, there was still a place for Tenmoku tea bowls, alongside other East Asian and native Japanese works.

Mount Unzen’s last big eruption took place in 1792 and caused a destructive landslide and tsunami. The death toll from the disaster is estimated at some 15,000 people, giving it the macabre distinction of being the most deadly volcanic eruption in Japan’s history.

The Fugen-dake signpost (普賢岳)

Tenmoku is the name given to a glaze made primarily of feldspar, limestone and over 5% iron oxide content. The varieties of tenmoku are endless with colour and finish affected by the ratio of ingredients, firing and cooling times.

The Unzen stamp

This guinomi is unused and in mint condition. There are no flaws to mention. Comes with the original high quality shiho-san paulownia tomobako with kiln stamp, calligraphy on the side of the box and an additional informational pamphlet.


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