What is Japanese Raku?

What is Japanese Raku?

Raku is a Japanese style of pottery first made during the 1580s; the practice is characterised by the removal of a clay object from the kiln at the height of the firing and causing it to cool very rapidly. Originally created for the tea ceremony, Raku ware is most commonly found in the form of tea bowls.

What does Raku mean in ceramics?

1 : Japanese hand-modeled pottery that is fired at a low temperature and rapidly cooled.

How can you tell raku pottery?

You’ll take your raku ware out of the kiln when it’s red hot, so you won’t be able to see the result until the piece has cooled. Some of the interesting results you might see are crackled glaze surfaces, black smoked unglazed clay or even beautiful metallic effects.

Is Raku firing Japanese?

Raku pottery is a low-firing process that originated in Japan in the sixteenth century, traditionally used for the tea ceremony. Tanaka Chōjirō, believed to be the first person to ever create raku ware, made tea-bowls for the tea-master Sen no Rikyu.

What kind of clay is used for raku pottery?

Most of the time, stoneware is the clay of choice for raku pottery. However, it is much more likely to survive the raku process if it has additional materials to prevent it from cracking. Grog can be added to clay bodies to make them more resilient.

What is raku clay good for?

Widely used for a multitude of different applications – not limited to Raku temperatures. This versatile clay can be fired to stoneware. With a large content of fine grog, it retains excellent plasticity making it suitable for larger work. Great working properties for coiling, hand building and slab work.

How are traditional raku tea bowls made?

Raku chawan tea bowls are molded using the tezukune technique, with the palms of the hand: clay is shaped into a dense, flat circle and built up by compressing between the palms. When dry enough, the rough and imperfect clay is trimmed with an iron or bamboo scraper and covered with an opaque glaze.

Can I use any clay for raku?

Grogged stoneware clay is suitable for raku firing. Grog helps make the pottery more resistant to thermal shock and reduces shrinkage. There are specially made raku clay’s that often contain kyanite. Porcelain can be raku fired if it contains a suitable grog, is well made, and is fired under 1200F.

Can you use a regular kiln for raku?

EQUIPMENT AND TOOLS. Potentially any kiln could be used for Raku, as it’s really the post-firing reduction that makes it happen.

Can you put water in raku pottery?

The clay is still porous. This means it absorbs liquid and it is not especially strong or durable. As a result, raku pottery unsuitable for being a water-holding vessel like a vase.

What is raku clay made of?

Western raku is typically made from a stoneware clay body, bisque fired at 900 °C (1,650 °F) and glost or glaze fired (the final firing) between 800–1,000 °C (1,470–1,830 °F), which falls into the cone 06 firing temperature range.

How is raku pottery made?

True Japanese Raku refers to pottery made by a specific family in Japan for pottery that is specifically made for the Japanese Tea Ceremony .

What is a raku pottery?

Raku pottery is created with a specific ceramic firing process that uses both fire and smoke to create unique patterns and designs. The piece is first bisque fired, then it is glazed and undergoes a raku firing process.

How is Raku made?

In raku pots are made just as for high fire work, either wheel-thrown or hand-built. Then a glaze is applied to areas where desired, like this: Then the piece is placed in an outdoor kiln and heated until the glaze is molten.

What is raku clay?

Raku is a unique form of pottery making; what makes it unique is the range of designs that can be created by simply altering certain variables. These variables-which include wax resist, glazes, slips, temperature, and timing-ultimately determine the outcome when firing a piece of clay.

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