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Ōtani Shirō

Japanese, born 1936

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Ōtani Shirō grew up in the pottery town of Shigaraki, where he worked decorating commercial pots for much of his youth. He moved to Kyoto to formally study ceramics, and returned in 1973 to build his own kiln, devoting himself to working in the distinctive local clay, which is coarse and flecked with quartz particles that burst in the firing process. In the ash and flame of the wood-fired kiln, Shigaraki clay is transformed into mottled shades of pink, rust, and brown, with occasional traces of transparent olive green glaze. Ōtani has won national and international recognition for his modern interpretations of tea wares in this demanding material.



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