As I said last time, I have a few of these. This one is bigger, with a slightly more purple colour, but largely the same shape otherwise. Since having seen a lot of these, Gemingchang pots tend to look very similar in many ways, just coming in different sizes. 140ml.
This was my very first pot of this type. These rough, badly finished clay pots that are rather porous in nature. I’ve since acquire more of them, but this is the one I used for years for young pu. I bought this pot in 2008. It’s been used for young pu since then, although the past couple years it’s been left mostly on the shelf as I used other pots. Maybe I should bring it out again for some work. 110ml.
This is one of those pots I bought already broken. There’s some light carving on the side with words. The lacquer is bulging out – I suppose I could try sanding it down, which would probably make it look better than it does at the moment. It seems like the entire front was smashed into a few pieces and glued back together. It was a traumatic event. 95ml.
I have a feeling I need to come up with something for the titles, otherwise there’s going to be a lot of “Mengchen” in this.
This is a pot with a nice, smooth clay, a “Mengchen” chop at the bottom, and not much else. It’s large, 160ml. One of those that I cleaned and actually (once in a while) use. I should put it back in rotation.
Another typical “Mengchen” marked pot, which basically means nothing. These are wood chops, supposedly popular in the late Qing/Early Republic era. The pot is an interesting purple brown, with a smooth skin. The lid is very loose on this one, sitting a bit awkwardly on the pot, but it is otherwise quite functional. 130ml.
I’ve been delinquent in updating this series. Here goes.
This is a pot marked “Gemingchang”, a producer of Yixing pots in the proverbial “Late Qing, early Republic” period. There are lots of these on the market, many of them fake. I’ve got maybe half a dozen of these, and I think after a while you notice a few things. This shape here is a pretty classic one for this mark. The cut on the spout is usually sharp. Really nice, practical pots. 100ml
This is from the National Palace Museum in Taipei, dated to the Kangxi period. This pot is part of the imperial collection – probably for use in the palace for whatever it is they fancy. It has some very nice enamel decoration on it, and supposedly a box was created in the Qianlong period for this item, although the box is now lost (in the back you see the corner of a box for something else). And, it’s big – probably a 400ml size.
This blog is sometimes about stuff you don’t even know you need to know. Here’s one – how to store teapots.
It’s usually not a problem, until it is. When you have three or five teapots, just putting them on a table and laying them out is good enough. When you have a couple hundred, that tactic doesn’t work that well.
After a lot of experimentation with various places and storage units, I have found that IKEA’s Alex works best, seen here
The main problem with storing teapots is that you want them accessible, you want to be efficient with space (at least in Hong Kong) and you want to be able to be relatively sure that they are safe when you open it and take something out. The nice thing about these drawers is that the small drawers are almost perfect for smaller teapots in terms of height. When you open you see most of the drawer, and you can pull out the teapot vertically. If you put it on a shelf, for example, you can easily bump into another teapot and cause something to fall out the front. With an open top drawer, you don’t worry about that. If you live in an earthquake prone area, well, this might not well as well, but I don’t think any storage solution is going to work well for that.
The bottom drawers are deeper, so I can fit the bigger pots and also boxes in there for my pairs of pots and things like that. So far I have two of these filled. I could use a third, I suppose, since I have cups and stuff to store, but I’m trying to avoid another one because more space = invitation to get more stuff to fill them. Anyway, if you need a storage solution for your teapots, you’re welcomed. No, IKEA didn’t pay me.