Monday, February 03, 2014

New Pots from John Benn

We are pleased to announce that the work of a fine Pacific NW potter, John Benn, can now be found on our WaSabiDou website, and in our showroom. The work is all wood-fired and we recently posted about 30 pieces, which includes Tea Bowls, Sake Cups, Sake Bottles (tokkuri,) and a large Vase.
Here's a bit about John and his wife, Colleen Gallagher, who is also a wonderful potter, and some images of a few of the pots:

John Benn studied with F. Carleton Ball and Ken Stevens at the U. of Puget Sound in Tacoma, and with Howard Shapiro and Sandra Simon in the MFA Program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In 1976, he built his first wood kiln. Now, he and his wife, Colleen Gallagher, make wood-fired pottery among the pristine forests of Harstine Island at the South End of Puget Sound in Washington State. John and Colleen have been professional potters for 27 years and currently fire two wood kilns, a salt kiln and a 25-ft hybrid-anagama  kiln, on their property.  The pots are formed from locally dug native clay clays, and their kilns are fueled with wood from the surrounding forests; such as fir, alder, madrona, cherry, and maple.  Typical firings are three or more days, creating works that are truly a combined result of both man and nature. Wood-firing gives both accidents and blessings, and it is in this imperfection that the beauty of their work is found. Their commitment to wood firing is obsessive and non-intellectual. In John’s word, “We discover our pots in addition to creating them.” Regarding his Chawan, Tea Bowls, John states, “More than the sum of its parts -- line, color, weight, texture -- it is hoped that the Chawan possesses something of the potter who made it. In use it may find life and allow others to feel the awe and mystery that I felt during its creation.”

Matcha Chawan - Tea Bowl

Matcha Chawan - Tea Bowl

Guinomi - Sake Cup

Guinomi - Sake Cup

Tokkuri - Sake Decanter

Kabin - Flower Vase

Matcha Chawan - Tea Bowl

Year-End Sweets from Tokara

This is a late post, but hopefully better late than never. We were fortunate to be around when Tokaragashi in Seattle was selling "nenmatsu wagashi" (year-end Japanese sweets.) Although they don't last long in our house, I fended off the family long enough to take a few pictures to share here.
Image these with a nice bowl of Charaku Matcha!

George Gledhill On-line Exhibition

We're pleased to be showing an on-line exhibition of nearly 200 pieces of the work of Pacific Northwest potter, George Gledhill.
Many of our WaSabiDou and Charaku friends have collected George's pots over the years through our two websites and through our Seattle showroom. The large collection will only be available to view at, or in the showroom by appointment. It features over 40 Tea Bowls, 60 Tea Cups, 25 Sake Cups, Vases, Dishes, Plates, Incense Containers, and more. Here's a preview of some of the items. Please have a look and let me know if you have any questions.

Black Raku Tea Bowl.
 Tall, WInter Tea Bowl with Crawling Shino Glaze.
 Shino Glaze Footed Sake Cup.
 Set of Small Dessert Dishes with Ladled Glaze.
 Porcelain Sake Cups with Engraved Buddhist Knot of Eternity.

Hotei-sama, God of Contentment and Happiness, Sculpture.