Robert Yellin's Japanese Pottery Blog

Greetings from Kyoto, We've just moved our gallery into a magnificent old Sukiya style home located very near the Silver Pavilion; a stunning area and setting for the inspired ceramic art we share with the world. Please visit us if ever in Kyoto or online at and

Friday, July 01, 2011

Tea For Peace--Charity Auction at the Silver Pavilion

On Thursday June 23rd a large--very large--Tea Ceremony was held at the Silver Pavilion; one of the main reasons for this large gathering--about 600 people attended--was to raise money for relief efforts in the northern region of Japan after the devasting quake and tsunami of March 11th. The cost of attending was not cheap, a 'ticket' cost 30,000 yen and entitled one to a thin tea setting, a thick tea setting (each 'ceremony' was for about 50 people at a time), a simple yet delicious kaiseki bento (stood in line for about an hour, yet met some very nice folks) entrance into the National Treasure--and usually off-limits--Tea house named Tōgudō, which was the room where the 4.5 tatami Tea style was founded by Ashikaga Yoshima (1435-1490). This was before hanging scrolls, before sushi, when imported Chinese vessels were held supreme. In this small room were Yoshimasa's writing utensils and a framed shoji window that when opened framed the garden, just like a hanging scroll. After viewing this important and very shibui structure I went to have a look at the contemporary works being auctioned off; many famous names were represented including Kakurezaki, Akiyama Yo, Suzuki Osamu, Kaneshige Yuho and Makoto and Kawase Shinobu. People came from all over Japan for the event, and I was most likely the person who lived closest to it all; after all my address here in Kyoto is 'In-Front-Of-The Silver Pavilion' district.


At July 02, 2011, Anonymous Milton Moon said...

From the south of Australia your blog brings back many memories. It also pleases us to know you are now part of this historic setting and adding to the cultural experience for any visiting tourist.


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