TOP
 >> Exhibitions
 >> Tea Ceremony Item List

Tea Ceremony

"Tea Ceremony"

Japanese Gallery (Honkan) Room 4  April 27, 2021 (Tue) - July 18, 2021 (Sun)

  
Container for Thick Tea with Lugs, Named "Odaimyō"
Seto ware, Edo period, 17th century (Gift of Mrs. Shiobara Chiyo)

Tea drinking and its role in society changed over time. In the 12th century, Zen monks introduced a new kind of tea drinking from China: green tea was ground into a powder and mixed with hot water. Monks drank this tea as a medicine and to stay awake during meditation.

Before long, the samurai also began to drink tea and competed for prizes in blind tasting competitions. In the 14th and 15th centuries, the elite samurai who ruled Japan focused on the aesthetics of tea drinking. They collected valuable Chinese works like paintings and tea bowls, displaying and using them during tea gatherings.

A century later, Sen no Rikyū (1522–91) established the foundations of the tea ceremony. When serving tea, he used valuable Chinese works together with simple utensils. He also stressed humility and the beauty of imperfection. Elite samurai practiced his style and its variations as a social, aesthetic, and spiritual pursuit.

From its origins until the present, the tea ceremony has always incorporated diverse genres of art. Works that tea masters believed had great aesthetic or historical value were carefully passed down through the generations. A selection of these works is shown here and changed regularly to reflect the seasons.

Major Work(s) on Exhibit 6 results
Designation Name Amount Creation Excavation Period Acquisition Ownership Comment
"Tenmoku" Tea Bowl China Yuan–Ming dynasty, 14th–15th century Gift of Mr. Hirota Matsushige, TG-2495
_MD_RECOMMEND Container for Thick Tea with Lugs, Named "Odaimyō" Seto ware Edo period, 17th century Gift of Mrs. Shiobara Chiyo, G-5786
_MD_RECOMMEND Important Cultural Property Poem (One of the "Tsugi-Shikishi Poem Papers") Attributed to Ono no Tōfū (894–966) Heian period, 10th century B-3256 On exhibit from June 8, 2021
_MD_RECOMMEND Tea Bowl Takatori ware Edo period, 17th century Private collection
_MD_RECOMMEND Set of Dishes ("Mukōzuke") with Plum Trees Jingdezhen ware, [Tenkei-akae] type, China Ming dynasty, 17th century Private collection
_MD_RECOMMEND Gourd-Shaped Sake Bottle with Twisting Bands Jingdezhen ware, [Shonzui] type, China Ming dynasty, 17th century Gift of Mr. Hirota Matsushige, TG-2578
Page Top