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Otagaki Rengetsu, Japanese, (1791–1875)
Side-Handled Sencha Tea Pot, c. 1840
Ceramics on ceramic
2 1/2 x 4 3/4 in. (6 x 12 cm)

Object Type: Ceramic
Technique: Thrown
Period: Edo, Late (1789-1868)
Credit Line: Purchase, Scripps Collectors' Circle
Accession Number: 2019.21.3

Rengetsu’s most prolific production was of Sencha pots such as this, which were used for formal tea ceremonies, known as chanoyu. However, many still chose to drink Sencha, a whole leaf tea, informally alongside other literati pursuits like painting and writing poetry. This poem evokes poignant images from nature, and reads:

Neither melted nor gone
the pure snowy water
flows down
into this flowerless village
beneath the spring night moon.

On the underside of the top, their is an inscription.

Object Description
The surface of this small, stout teapot carries a satin sheen over a variety of subtle browns. A poem, inscribed in delicate calligraphy that decorates the pot, contrasts with the rustic appearance of the work.

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