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Character Tray, Square

Character Tray, Square

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This square tea tray by ceramicist Wang Wen De is the latest in a series of works based on a traditional Chinese musical notation system called Gongche notation. Whereas his earlier works used patterns of circular holes to represent individual notes, this latest line takes a more literal approach: the actual notations in the form of Chinese characters are meticulously carved directly into the tray.

This tray is formed by joining two layers of thin stoneware, leaving a thin hollow area for capturing water overflow. The characters themselves are carefully carved and “punched through” the top layer of the tray. All surfaces are then glazed with a light grey shino.

We have been using a similar tray in our own tasting table since 2015, employing a “dry brew” or “gan pao” method of tea making, where very little excess water is used.

*Please take note that each tray can be slightly different in color tone and texture. It is not unusual to have areas of thicker glazing, and or colorations that reflect the different interactions between the mineral content of the clay body and glaze. Each tray is different, and may not be identical to the photographed item.

Approximate dimensions: 215mm width, 215mm depth, 12.5mm thickness・Artist: 王文德

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