Studio Suiraku

Original Japanese raku yaki matcha bowl (matchawan 抹茶碗) in black, handmade by Studio Suiraku. Exquisite, rare shallow kuro raku bowl based on the shape of a traditional Japanese washbasin (tarai, 盥). Created for use during the traditional Japanese tea ceremony.
Product Black raku-yaki chawan tea bowl
Studio / Artist Suiraku
Origin Kyoto, Japan
Colour / Glaze -
Volume 300ml
Dimensions Ø13.5 x 5.5cm
Weight 370g
Artist's mark Yes
Packaging Gift box
  Each item is handmade therefore size, colour and glazing may vary slightly.

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Suiraku 翠楽

The Suiraku kiln is an offshoot of the Rakunyu kiln, which is currently run by third generation Yoshimura Rakunyu (吉村 楽入). Born in Kyoto in 1959 as the eldest son of the second generation Rakunyu, in 2011 he was named a Future Master by the city of Kyoto and is a member of the Kyoto Kogei Association.


Raku-Yaki 楽焼

Raku-yaki is a Japanese term used to describe short-fired, lead-glazed pottery intended for tea ceremonies and usually freely moulded by hand. It was initially produced only in the colours red ("aka-raku") and black ("kuro-raku"). Later, white and amber and occassionally Oribe green raku bowls began to be produced. Red and black are considered the best complementary colours for the bright green matcha.

Raku bowls have a soft and warm feeling, and are capable of absorbing a lot of moisture, allowing them to gain patina and beauty over time. They are considered the most noble bowls for the tea ceremony. The first raku bowl is said to have been made around 1579 by the brickmaker Chōjirô under the guidance of the great tea master Sen no Rikyû. After his death, Chōjirô was honoured by Prince Hideyoshi by bestowing the raku seal on his successor, Jôkai. Since then, the Jôkai family has used the name Raku and still produces this exceptional tea pottery in Kyoto.

Kuro-Raku 黒楽

For black raku (kuro-raku; 黒楽), a special rough clay with a high iron and manganese content and sand from the Kamigawa River in Kyoto is used. The clay is dug and stored by the raku family for following generations. Several layers of glaze (kamogawa-ishi) are applied by cutting and pressing, and are finally covered with a raku transparent glaze. The firing temperature is relatively high at 1,200-1,250°C. The red hot bowl is removed after only 8-10 minutes, and is quickly cooled in the air. The result is a non-sintered, high-fired earthenware. Authentic kuro-raku bowls have a slight unevenness on the side where they are cut out.

It is thought that the special black shade of the bowl brings out the bright green of the matcha most clearly.


As raku-yaki wares are porous, they should only be washed with lukewarm water and no detergent. Clean immediately after use to prevent stains. Do not soak as this may cause the tea bowl to fall apart.

Product Details

Chawan 茶碗

The tea bowl, known as a chawan or matchawan, originated in China and began to be imported to Japan in the 13th century. To this day the chawan is used in the Japanese tea ceremony to serve koicha: a thick, dark tea made with the finest matcha, as well as usucha: a thinner, frothier, diluted version – how matcha is more typically prepared. Chawan come in a variety of shapes and regional styles, sometimes with the addition of seasonal motifs, making them popular collectors' items.

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