AKI KUSA ZU (handcrafted Teacup: 200ml)

This is limited edition only available in spring and summer season.

Handcrafted teacup: 200ml (7.03fl oz), diameter: 3.14inches (8cm) height: 3.54inches (9cm)
Sophisticated Kyo Yaki (Kyoto Style)
Made by Zenshoh Yamaoka at Zenshoh Kiln

RINPA is one of the major historical schools of Japanese painting, which flourished in the 17th century in Kyoto. "RIN" means the beautiful beads, and "PA" means school, so all works in RINPA are focusing on colorful and elegant expression. RINPA is also known as one of the arts which express more unique Japanese sensitivity in Japanese modern art.

We, Hibiki-an have collaborated with Zenshoh Yamaoka, who is the leading expert of paintings derived from masterpieces in the middle ages and acclaimed Kyo Yaki artisan, to release a series of Matcha bowls featuring RINPA paintings. Zenshoh Yamaoka chose SHIKI KACHOU ZU. Each painting is well decorated by his unique sense.

Houitsu Sakai (1761 - 1828), who was part of the third generation of RINPA, indurated RINPA in the Edo period. He is well known for his realistic description of birds, grasses and flowers, which he paints lively and elegantly.

One of his representative works is a silver folding screen of NATSU AKI KUSA ZU, which is “Flowering Plants of Summer and Autumn” in English. This work was painted on the back of a golden folding screen of FUJIN RAIJIN ZU, which is the “Wind God and Thunder God Screens” in English. NATSU KUSA summer grass was decorated on the back of a golden folding screen of RAIJIN the Thunder God, and AKI KUSA autumn grass was decorated on the back of a golden screen of FUJIN the Wind God. Both plants are relevant to those Gods painted by Kohrin Ogata (1658 - 1716), who is one of the most famous artists in the RINPA school. He is the second generation of the RINPA school, and Houitsu Sakai who is the third generation was impressed by Kohrin’s work, and decided to paint his work on the back of Kohrin’s work in order not only to express the relationship between heaven and earth, god and nature, permanent and impermanent things but also to show his honor to Kohrin Ogata. As above, Houitsu’s work of Summer and Autumn Grass folding screen is one of the rare works not only in RINPA but also in the whole history of Japanese arts. (RINPA Matcha Bowls + Cups page)

AKI means autumn, and KUSA means grass in Japanese. Autumn grasses and flowers are painted elegantly on this teacup. Each plant is described with a refined touch, and as the leaves turn to orange color, we feel that autumn is around the corner. Leaves and flowers are blown by the wind, caused by FUJIN the Wind God. Even though the strong wind caused by FUJIN the Wind God blows against them, plants resist it and stand with strong vitality.

Autumn grasses are depicted very delicately, impressing supreme gracefulness. The line of each stem, leaf and flower is described with a fine touch, and this technique creates a soft atmosphere. The leaves of SUSUKI Japanese pampas grass and YAMABUDOH wild grape leaves turn from green to red color gradually, evoking the changing season. The use of golden color on the leaves and veins adds to the elegant scene. The purple color of the FUJIBAKAMA thoroughwort flowers also adds accent to the teacup. Each autumn grass and flower is well reflected on the silver color glaze, which is close to the original color of the BYOBU folding screen.

The scenery of autumn also can be seen from the impression of its design. Autumn flowers and leaves are blown by strong wind which is caused by FUJIN the Wind God. TSUTA ivy is flying in the air, and grasses blown by strong autumn wind are about to lay down, but all plants withstand exposure to the wind. In spite of this harsh environment, some flowers and grasses bloom with beautiful color, evoking the strength of nature and its beauty.

Autumn flowers and grasses are vividly described on this teacup. Not only its beauty but also those plants are full of vitality. Please enjoy our genuine Japanese green tea with this tea cup.

Specially packaged in a wooden box.
Lead-free. Made in Japan.
Free shipping on all tea ware items!




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Zenshoh Yamaoka

Zenshoh Yamaoka was born in 1942. He worked under Zenjiroh Ueyama for 10 years, and then opened his own Zenshoh kiln in 1969.
His paintings derived from masterpieces in the middle ages are excellent. It is said his precise drawing techniques are in a class of their own. Indeed, he was officially designated as a traditional craftsman by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in 2002. His sophisticated, exquisite, elegant, and advanced drawing techniques receive high acclaim in the Kyo Yaki pottery industry.


- It is best to wash this item using only tepid water or mild chlorine-free dish washing detergent.
- If necessary, you may occasionally use a chlorine detergent.
- Do not sterilize by boiling, or in a dish washing machine.

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