• Hagi-yaki Ware's photo

Hagi-yaki Ware

Hagi


A Hagi-yaki ware bowl is indispensable for tea ceremonies

Japanese ceramics have matured alongside the culture of the tea ceremony. The whole of Yamaguchi’s Hagi City is involved in the firing of Hagi-yaki ware, a type of earthenware that is loved by tea ceremony masters. Pottery was born here in the 17th century and matured over nearly 400 years of history. Hagi-yaki ware’s distinguishing feature is its simple shape taken from the texture of the earth. Although the pieces appear as if they were unearthed, centuries old relics, their extremely simple, no-frill shape is rooted in the philosophy of quiet simplicity behind the tea ceremony.

  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo

The ‘seven transformations’ of Hagi-yaki ware that appear through use

The word nanabake (seven transformations) is used for Hagi-yaki ware. This word refers to the change in color as the tea seeps through the cracks in the glazing formed by the rough earth that was used to create Hagi-yaki ware, permeating the bowl and changing its color. Such change in color over time is highly prized by tea ceremony masters. The beauty of change and the beauty of minimal adornment – this world view of Hagi-yaki ware embodies the aesthetic values held by the Japanese.

  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo

Explore the town of Hagi and visit a variety of potters

The appeal of Hagi-yaki ware can be grasped only when you hold a piece in your hand. Because the town of Hagi is filled with potters and ceramic shops, you should go and hold a variety of pieces in your hand to see for yourself. Hagijo-gama is the main store of the Hagiyaki Kaikan visited by many tourists, and has a large variety of Hagi-yaki ware in stock. Genshu-gama is a potter’s workshop located in an over 100-year old traditional Japanese-style house where each piece is painstakingly crafted with the highest level of craftsmanship. Senryuzan is one of the few potters where the traditional way of creating Hagi-yaki ware has been passed down since 1826. All pottery workshops offer a hands-on pottery making experience, so be sure to try it out if you have the time. You form the piece by hand and using a potter’s wheel, then choose a glaze to complete it. For those who want to try making their very own Hagi-yaki ware, this is a must-try experience.

  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo

Stroll around the castle town to experience a trip into Hagi’s past and present

Hagi City, the birthplace of Hagi-yaki ware was originally a castle town, and much of the traditional architecture remains to this day. Hagi is also a town that made history, producing a great number of important figures known to all Japanese history buffs such as Yoshida Shouin and Takasugi Shinsaku. Be sure to make the rounds of the historical and tourist spots. If you’re looking to take a short break, find your way to guest house ruco, which is a café and lounge where many overseas tourists visit for refreshments. Friendly English-speaking staff are available for visitors.

  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo
  • Hagi-yaki Ware's photo

For reference

Hagiyaki Kaikan

  • Address
    3155 Higashi-ku, Shinkawa, Hagi-shi, Yamaguchi-ken
  • Telephone
    0838-25-9545
  • Open
    8:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Closed
    -
  • Price
    1,200 yen for hands-on pottery making
  • Website
  • Access
    Yamaguchi Ube Airport is approximately a one and a half hour flight from Haneda Airport.
    From Yamaguchi Ube Airport, take the airport shuttle bus to JR Shimonoseki Station (1 hour 15 min). At JR Shimonoseki Station, transfer to the San’in Main Line (3 hours). Get off at Higashi-Hagi Station, and a 10 minute walk.

Genshu-gama

  • Address
    14 Kawashima, Hagi-shi, Yamaguchi-ken
  • Telephone
    0838-25-0842
  • Open
    9:00 am to 6:00 pm
  • Closed
    Irregular days
  • Price
    2,000 yen for hands-on pottery making
  • Access
    Yamaguchi Ube Airport is approximately a one and a half hour flight from Haneda Airport.
    From Yamaguchi Ube Airport, take the airport shuttle bus to JR Shimonoseki Station (1 hour 15 min). At JR Shimonoseki Station, transfer to the San’in Main Line (3 hours). Get off at Higashi-Hagi Station, and a 30 minute walk.

Senryuzan

  • Address
    4481 Chinto, Hagi-shi, Yamaguchi-ken
  • Telephone
    0838-22-0541
  • Open
    8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Closed
    Wednesdays
  • Price
    2,000 yen for hands-on pottery making
  • Website
  • Access
    Yamaguchi Ube Airport is approximately a one and a half hour flight from Haneda Airport. From Yamaguchi Ube Airport, take the airport shuttle bus to JR Shimonoseki Station (1 hour 15 min). At JR Shimonoseki Station, transfer to the San’in Main Line (3 hours). Get off at Higashi-Hagi Station, and a 15 minute walk.

ruco

  • Address
    92 Karahi-machi, Hagi-shi, Yamaguchi-ken
  • Telephone
    0838-21-7435
  • Open
    4:00 to 10:00 pm (café)
  • Closed
    Wednesdays
  • Price
    Drinks from 300 yen and up, lodging from 2,800 yen and up
  • Website
  • Access
    Yamaguchi Ube Airport is approximately a one and a half hour flight from Haneda Airport.
    From Yamaguchi Ube Airport, take the airport shuttle bus to JR Shimonoseki Station (1 hour 15 min). At JR Shimonoseki Station, transfer to the San’in Main Line (3 hours). Get off at Higashi-Hagi Station, and a 15 minute walk.

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