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Big Bowl by Takeichi (Buichi) Kawai


Great big bowl by Takeichi Kawai.

Very rare piece. Big and heavy item.

W35cm x H9cm / In good condition.

*Please note this artist never signs his works.

Takeichi (Buichi) Kawai (1908-1989)

In 1927, Takeichi studied ceramics with his legendary uncle Kawai Kanjiro (1890-1966), one of Japan’s most famous potters and a founder of the Mingei movement, and received his guidance over the course of the nearly 40 years until Kanjiro’s death.

He inherited mingei techniques such as gosu porcelain, cinnabar lacquerware, and ameyu and kakiyu glazes from his uncle.
During this period, he worked as an assistant to Bernard Leach, who was visiting the Kanetani kiln (Kanjiro’s workshop) in 1935, and sought guidance at his side.

Works from the later period of Kawai Takeichi's career were wood-fired in a four-chambered Noborigama climbing kiln which he established with his son in 1978 in a rural area of Kameoka city in Kyoto Prefecture where wood-burning kilns are still permitted.  The kiln was christened Nantan-gama( Nantan Kiln)

Takeichi’s works are in the collections of the following museums.

National Gallery of Victoria
Museum of NewZealand
Brooklyn Museum 
Gardiner Museum
Asian Art Museum ,etc.

1908 Born in Yasugi, Shimane Prefecture
1926 Begins apprenticing under Kawai Kanjiro in Kyoto
1935 Serves as assistant to Bernard Leach at Kawai Kiln, Gojozaka, Kyoto
1942 Studies ceramic making in China for one year
1949 Joins the National Creative Painting Association
1953 Becomes an independent artist
1964 Kanjiro-Hirotsugu-Takeichi Trio Exhibition held in Kyoto
Traveled to Australia and New Zealand
Held private exhibition and pottery classes in Wellington
1978 Holds 50th year memorial exhibitions at Takashimaya Galleries in Tokyo, Osaka & Kyoto


Takeichi Kawai is an artist who doesn’t sign on his works.
As written in product page, Takeichi’s uncle is Kanjiro Kawai, one of the most famous and important Japanese potter. Kanjiro never signed his works either.
He also did not like his works to be treated ostentatiously as "works of art. This was because he believed that beautiful things are never special. Beautiful things are not something that can be created only by special people, but also reside in the handiwork of unknown craftsmen.

There is another important artist Shoji Hamada, he didn’t sign either.
It is said that this is because he tried to be a craftsman rather than an individual artist in the spirit of folk art.

Kanjiro Kawai and Hamada were main member of Japanese Mingei (Folk) movement.
Not signing on works is kind of Mingei philosophy.
Shoji Hamada and Kanjiro Kawai are well known as no-sign artists.
So your vase by Takeichi Kawai didn’t sign on his works as he is taught by and influenced by Kanjiro.

What you see on the box is original signature by Takeichi Kawai.
So it doesn’t mean pottery without signature is cheap, it doesn’t mean pottery with signature is more expensive and valuable.
If you ever have a chance to see Shoji Hamada and Kanjiro Kawai’s pieces at any museum, they are always without signature. If there is a signature, it is imitation.

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