Visit craftsmen – Satsuma ware: Your personality found in traditional Satsuma ware

May 9, 2017 We visited Shinichiro Yanagi, who is demonstrating his work at Aoyama Square.

Satsuma ware: Shinichiro Yanagi

Satsuma ware is said to have originated by Korean potters brought back to the Lord of Satsuma at the end of the 16th century.

There are pottery called White Satsuma and Black Satsuma in Satsuma ware, and the soil used is also different. In addition, there are various systems even in the same Satsuma ware, such as the Naeshiro River system, the Pit field system, the Ryumoji system, the Nishimochida system, and the porcelain system.

How to go on the road of Satsuma ware

Satsuma ware that has been nearby for a long time

Yanagi’s father is a person who paints White Satsuma.


For this reason, Yanagi-san had been looking at paintings since he was a child, so he spent his childhood as a child who liked to draw.


His father didn’t want him to succeed him, so Yanagi didn’t want to follow the same path as his father.

However, when he entered Kagoshima University, he naturally majored in ceramics, and when he noticed that he was beginning to follow the path of Satsuma ware.

Differences in potter’s potter’s-moles

Satsuma ware is a division of labor system, and it is common for people who do potter’s and others who paint.


Mr. Yanagi’s father was a painter, so there was a painting kiln in the house.

However, Mr. Yanagi started working as a potter and painter, so after graduating from university, he also bought a kiln for honyaki (potter’s book).


The temperature of the painting kiln and the main pottery kiln are different, and the kiln for honyaki has a higher temperature.

Traditional Satsuma ware and Personality

What to aim for

Yanagi’s goal is to keep traditional Satsuma ware. He also said that it is to express his individuality by making use of traditional techniques.


There are many that have been designated as traditional crafts, but Yanagi feels that fewer and fewer people are making use of the old tradition as it is.



Certainly, the times are changing, and it is also necessary to make things tailored to the people today.

However, it is another story to cut off the one which has continued for a long time just because of that. Yanagi himself said that he would like to establish his style after inheriting the old things as they were.

Satsuma ware accessories made with my wife

Satsuma ware has not forgotten its efforts to take on new forms.


Yanagi-san makes accessories. Potter’s and painting are done by oneself, but the metal fittings are made by the wife, and the couple cooperates.





His father’s back is still wide.

There is a reason why Mr. Yanagi is particular about “traditional Satsuma ware”.

Yanagi’s father was famous for his traditional paintings of White Satsuma. Since I was a child, I have been growing up watching traditional Satsuma-yaki paintings, so I guess that seeing something that is too innovative can wipe off the sense of incongruity.


Yanagi-san’s patterns range from plants to living things. He said that it is fun to draw people now, although it seems that there is no particular one.

However, plants, living things, and people all feel nostalgic somewhere, but even if modern people see it, they do not feel old. Yanagi’s love for tradition and his desire to continue to create new things can be reflected in the paintings.

In the midst of the few creators of White Satsuma

Soil of White Satsuma and Soil of Black Satsuma

When Satsuma ware is roughly divided, it is divided into white and black, but impurities are not included in the soil of White Satsuma.
This is because it is not possible to produce a beautiful white color when impurities are contained.


Mr. Yanagi is particular about White Satsuma in such a part.


However, at present, he said that he wanted to make this something that could be managed because there is a difficulty that stains are easy to poke when used everyday.

– – –

Mr. Yanagi, who spoke with us this time, is exhibiting in the special exhibition “Early Summer Banquet Enjoy Living with Traditional Works”.

Until May 17th, we have been demonstrating production almost every day, so please listen to the story and watch the special Satsuma ware.




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