This rectangular tea tray by ceramicist Wang Wen De is based on oracle bone script, the earliest known form of Chinese writing. Used to record royal divinations during the Shang Dynasty (16th century - 1046 BC), this script is believed to be the direct ancestor to modern Chinese script.
This tray is formed by joining two layers of thin stoneware, leaving a thin hollow area for capturing water overflow. The individual characters of the tray are carefully carved by hand by the artist, a task that is meticulous and difficult, since the characters must be carved with the tray inverted. All surfaces are then covered with base shino glaze, before a layer of pewter luster is added.
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: 550mm width, 215mm depth, 15mm thickness・Artist: 王文德
More familiar with our old quantities? Here’s the conversion:
|Metric quantities||Ounce equivalent||Servings|
|30 grams (new size!)||1.05 oz.||5-8|
|60 grams||2.10 oz.||10-15|
|120 grams||4.20 oz.||20-30|
|240 grams||8.46 oz.||40-60|