Tea Containers and Tea Bowls—Through the Eyes of a Connoisseur

The Nezu Museum

poster for Tea Containers and Tea Bowls—Through the Eyes of a Connoisseur

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Tea containers have long been treasured by tea afficianados. Tea bowls win great affection through being held in the hands. It is fair to say that tea containers and tea bowls are the most highly valued utensils in today’s world of tea. One of the reasons these two types of utensils are so highly regarded is the publication of a catalogue of illustrious tea utensils, the Taisho Meikikan (Famed Tea Utensils of the Taisho Period [1912-1926], illustrated; nine titles in eleven volumes), which began in 1921. It presents 875 tea containers and tea bowls, with clear guidance on how they are to be appreciated. In this exhibition, the first section provides an overview of the process by which the Taisho Meikikan was realized, with a focus on tea containers and tea bowls from the museum collection. The second section presents materials attesting to the friendship between Yoshio Takahashi (tea name Soan, 1861-1937), the compiler and editor of that series, and Kaichiro Nezu, Sr. (tea name Seizan, 1860-1940), who built the foundations of the museum’s collection.

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from June 01, 2021 to July 11, 2021
Reservations required

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