Tea Bowl Named "Kimura"
This tea bowl was made on the Korean peninsula and exported to Japan. From around the end of the 16th century, Japanese tea masters began ordering tea bowls made to their specifications from Korea, a trend driven by the desire for unique, elaborately-designed tea utensils. This exhibit is an early example of one such made-to-order bowl.
It features a floral pattern stamped into the surface and carved diagonal lines. Bowls with this kind of intricately-carved pattern of diagonal lines are known as ‘Horimishima.’ The name derives from the Japanese word for carving, or ‘hori,’ and the Mishima Calendar, which was printed at the Mishima Taisha shrine in Shizuoka prefecture. The calendar was printed in tiny, tightly-packed characters, so this type of minutely-detailed pattern became known as ‘Mishima.’ Consequently, ‘Horimishima’ means ‘a minutely-detailed pattern made by carving.’ This kind of bowl is also known as ‘sotobana-de,’ or ‘outside flower’ style, after the floral decorations on the outside. This rarely-seen design was much loved by tea masters down the ages.