Yamada Jozan

I’m using this today




Looks awfully like a yixing, but is in fact a tokoname pot made by one of the Yamada Jozan (there have been three so far, in good Japanese tradition of passing down the name).  I’m not quite sure which generation made this particular one — some indication online seems to suggest the first, but I can be wrong.  This type of pot was made basically in imitation of yixing ware, and the Yamadas have been particularly good at it.  I got this without the original tomobako, but it comes with a yuzamashi and five cups.  I’m only using the pot at the moment, and ignoring the rest.  Obviously, this was intended for sencha, but I’m making Chinese tea with this, with good results.


Yamada Jozan — 13 Comments

  1. If this teapot is from Yamada Jozan III (Living National Treasure in Japan, dead in 2005), it is a museum piece ! and very expensive no ?
    I own 2 kyusus from Yamada So, son of Yamada Emu, now Yamada Jozan IV, himself son of Yamada Jozan III.

    • I can’t find a good way to ID one from the other — which generation is which. The style of the piece suggests it’s older — I’m guessing from one or the earlier generations one, mostly because the later pieces I’ve seen pictures of tend to be slightly more creatively shaped/coloured, and they have not been making traditional pieces like this recently, but I can very well be wrong. In terms of craftsmanship though, it is definitely the best made pot I own — it pours beautifully.

  2. ushirode is a style that is long practiced in tokoname pottery, it comes back nowadays, not that is has ever been totally left out.
    (sado pottery, “mumyoi”, also features the back handle often, you may see some on http://www.mumyoui.net)

    just for curiosity –ArtisticNippon currently offers two shudei in that style (murata yoshiki), you have probably seen them:

    the fist one is very typically japanese with the “hammered” pattern, tataki; the second one could easily be taken for a yixing (except maybe for the lid button)).

    from the looks only, I would agree that it would be difficult to put a date on your pot (on a lot of pots, actually :D).

    shudei often works fine on chinese green, yellow and white teas too.

    • I don’t exactly shop at Artistic Nippon, so no, I haven’t. The ushirode style is indeed quite common and you can find them from time to time on Japanese pottery sites. I obviously like them for my Chinese bias.

      Japanese pots are usually quite distinctive — the clay’s tone and colour are different, and so easily distinguishable from yixing and shantou pots.

  3. Hi MarshalN, it is an old posting, yet it still might be of interest: The above pot is not Yamada Jozan, but Miura Jozan. This potter is unrelated and from Sado Island, using Mumyoi clay. Cheers!

  4. Actually, This is Jozan Miura from Sado Island in Niigata Prefecture. The pottery produced there are called “Mu-myo-i-yaki (Mu-myo-i ware)”. Special thing about Mu-myo-i teapots is that their outside surface is polished. This process takes time and may be Sodo-island is the only 1 place in Japan that aplly this technique to hand crafted teapot. Even in China, it is rare to find polished teapot, since chinese people tend to rather appreciate the clay as it be. However, Many antique Chinese teapot in Thailand are the polished one, for elite’s flavor in ancient time.

    Even it is not teapot by Yamada Jozan family, this teapot still unique, well crafted, rare, and the clay is going very well with Oolong tea (I have 1 Jozan Miura too). You will never find the 2nd one easily. In fact, I have shudei (red clay) teapot by Jozan Yamada iii too. But taste of tea pouring from Miura’s is better.

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