Profile of Mr. Ito Keiichi (or Ito Shouhou) of Shouhou kiln
Born in Kyoto in 1959, he was apprenticed to Shouhou I and took over the Shouhou kiln in 1989.

He has been active in promoting Kyoyaki overseas, holding an exhibiton in Paris in 1994 and teaching throwing and painting techniques in Australia in 1995.

He obtained the title of traditional craftsman in 1999 and in 2006 was presented with the Kyoto Mayoral Award.
The Shouhou kiln can be found in the warren of narrow streets which make up the Higashiyama district, home to Kyoyaki craftsmen for centuries.
It is a small atelier with a homely feel.
Mr. Ito Shouhou hand-throws all the pieces on his potters wheel and draws on the raised designs with a nozzle and bag, in a technique known as 'icchin" or tubelining. This is a highly skilled process and the finished effect can be very intricate.
The pieces are then carefully hand-painted. Precise brushwork is needed to fill in some of the tiny spaces created by the tubelining technique, which was initially developped to keep the different glazes apart.
One of the most striking aspects of Shouhou's work are the vibrant colors. Each color is fired at a different temperaure resulting in the depth and luminosity seen on the finished items.
Shouhou's wares range from multi-colored pieces to monotone, most common being a bright mustard yellow, dark purple and most recently a cheerful lime green. Favorite themes include nature themes and auspicious motifs.

While the production process draws from traditional Japanese pottery techniques, the finished items are fresh and modern. The love that the craftsman has for his art is evident in the care and attention to detail given to these beautiful items which are hand-crafted from beginning to end with no piece exactly identical.

Copyright 2008 Artistic Nippon by Yoshikawa Toki Co.