Maeose Chawan

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Origin:Shizuoka, Japan


This striking chawan is ideal for appreciators of the arts. Maeose-style chawan draw the eye in ways that few other styles can. Its timeless appeal exemplifies the Kirei-Sabi tea ceremony aesthetic.

After skillfully creating a beautifully symmetrical chawan teaware artisans deliberately and artfully disfigure the piece by pressing their thumb into the still malleable clay. Chawan made in this style are known as Maeose (前押) or “pressed face.”  Maeose chawan are said to be the preferred style of Kobori Enshu - feudal lord, tea master, and renaissance man of renown. This chawan was handcrafted by Rito Aoshima in the Shitoro-Yaki style, which is a style of Japanese ceramics local to the area where Sugimoto Tea is produced. What makes it unique is its utilization of native materials, naturally iron-rich clays along with glazes derived from local stone and other endemic materials. The piece offers a subdued fawn-like coloration and a pebbled surface that can be fully enjoyed in sunlight. The pronounced rim acts as a counterpoint to the understated color palette, which together give the chawan a confident air.

This chawan comes in a kiribako (桐箱) made from paulownia wood. 


About the Shitoro-Yaki Teaware

Shitoro-Yaki (志戸呂焼) refers to the pottery style of a small region in southwest Shizuoka Prefecture, dating back to the 12th Century. The center of this style is a town formerly known as Kanaya (金谷), which is also the home of the Sugimoto family. Clay from this area is high in ferric oxides, represented by yellowish and reddish hues in the clay and glazes. Pottery in this style often showcases the color and character of this clay, encouraging us to appreciate rustic simplicity and focus on the subtleties that make every piece unique.

Kobori Enshu, a tea master in the Edo Period (17th Century), loved Shitoro-Yaki and certified it as one of the "Enshu Nana Kama" (7 pottery-styles of Enshu).


About the Artist

Rito Aoshima (青嶋利陶) is a 2nd generation potter, whose father started the current studio in which he works. The studio was created to revitalize the Shitoro-Yaki style and preserve its over 900 year history. The kiln was built as a Noborigama (rising kiln), which has multiple levels staggered vertically to achieve an extremely hot firing temperature. Rito Aoshima studied pottery in Seto (a famous location for pottery), before returning to Shizuoka to study in the Shitoro-Yaki style. Later, he has assumed his father's studio and kiln, and continues to make teaware for tea ceremony, as well as other vessels with a focus on elegance.


Please note that each item is exquisitely hand-crafted and unique so the shipped pieces may not exactly match the photo. 


Care Instructions:

  • Hand wash only.
  • Do not use a harsh scrubber.
  • Do not put in the dishwasher or microwave.

Hot Brew Preparation

Cold Brew Preparation


  • Shitoro-yaki Ware
  • Made by Rito Aoshima
  • Diameter 5", Height 2.5"
  • Comes with handmade kiribako wooden box
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