Sugimoto Sadamitsu 杉本貞光 (*1935)

Shigaraki Plate with Glaze Pool, named "Flavor of Tea"

Inv. Nr. #21.029
Date 1990s
Material Ash glazed stoneware
Dimensions H 4,5  x W 28,5 D. 28,5 cm

Comes with inscribed, signed and sealed wooden box, with additional inscription by Tachibana Daiki (1899-2005).

Price: EUR 3,500

Born in Tōkyō in 1935, Sugimoto is a self-taught, highly admired master of Iga and Shigaraki pottery. He built his own anagama kiln in Shigaraki in 1968. Along with his research and study of old Shigaraki and Iga ware, he became interested in Zen Buddhism and has been a disciple of Tachibana Daiki (1899-2005, 511th head monk of Daitoku-ji and president of Hanazono University) since 1974.


Over the years, his rigorous training in Zen has infused his pottery works with the power of a liberal and unsophisticated spirit, making him one of the best Iga potters of our time. Focusing mainly on traditional tea ware, Sugimoto's works were shown, for example, at an exhibition commemorating the 400th anniversary of the tea master Sen no Rikyū in 1989. It is noteworthy that in the same year some of his works were selected for a movir about Sen no Rikyū by Teshigahara Hiroshi, which brought him additional recognition as one of the best potters of our time. His work is widely represented in international public and private museum collections around the world, including the Tokyo National Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Pavilion for Japanese Art.


The plate is signed by the artist on the base and comes with the original wooden box, additionally inscribed by Tachibana Daiki who named it "Flavor of Tea" (chami). Here, the word 'tea' could directly lead to the impression that the green glaze pooling in the middle of the plate is green tea. However, the term has several other connotations as well. In modern Japanese, the expression is used to describe elegant things. But written by the Zen master Daiki, the name could also be understood as a quotation, referring to an old Zen Buddhist saying that "Tea and Zen are one" (chazen ichimi, lit.: "Tea and Zen are of the same flavor").