What does Yamaki Mean?

yenling83

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I may be spelling that wrong. What does this term mean, I often see it associated with Tokoname Pots?

Thanks
 

Bonsai Nut

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Yamaki is a fairly popular Japanese surname. Literally it means "mountain tree". There are numerous significant/important individuals named "Yamaki", including several Yamakis that are well-known in bonsai.

Perhaps you are referring to Yamaki Pottery, which is located in Tokoname?
 

Smoke

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Yamaaki is a famous kiln in the Tokoname region of Japan. Much more than bonsai pots are made there. Tea ware, and dishes also. The two main bonsai pot potters there are Master potter Sadamitsu Kataoka and potter (not master) Toshio Kataoka.

The two junipers I have below are in yamaaki ware pots. The first is a slanting juniper in a Yamaaki drum pot, and the second is a small kishu juniper in a shohin Yamaaki pot. The shohin pot is signed and is signed by master potter Sadamitsu Kataoka. The masters seal is in the shape of an eggplant and the only hanko shaped like that.
 

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cbobgo

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Al, presumably those two pots were pricey? I've never held any master level pots in person - can you describe how they look or feel different from an average pot?

Pot quality is still somewhat of a mystery to me - I'd like to be able to learn what differentiates a top quality pot from an average pot (not the cheap knock-offs, I can spot those easy.)

- bob
 

Smoke

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Bob, will you be at the Monterey show in June? I will bring them over for you to see. In fact I can bring over a whole box of shohin pots from about 15 potters from Japan.
 

cbobgo

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That would be awesome Al, but I think that's going to be the day of my girl's birthday party, so I don't know if I will be able to get away. I'll get back to you as we get a little closer.

- bob
 

kakejiku

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Since I do not know the history of the word I can only give you the meanings of the individual characters. If it is a name and spelled as you have written i.e. Yamaki it could be the following readings:
山木、山喜、八巻 Or 山気
If it is written according to the links in the post by Brian Underwood as Yamaaki it would most likely be written as 山秋.

There are other readings of Yamaaki, but this one seemed to be the most reasonable.
As a side note, an obscure reading of Chinese Elm in Japanese is 秋楡 as opposed to the more common 山楡.
 

Brian Van Fleet

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@ kakejiku, thank you for joining and posting! Sometimes it's tough to get the translation right, so it's good to have that perspective!

@ cbobgo, Tokoname pots are surprisingly lighter in weight than you'd expect. Chinese (and Houtoku pots) are denser, heavier clay bodies. Glazed pots tend to have very rich, deep textures, and lighter colored clay bodies. I have a couple from Yamafusa signed as KOIE Takehiko, and one from Yoshimura, signed as Sadamitsu Kataoka, with an amazing blue glaze.

@smoke...nice taste in pots!

@ all: I have a listing of the Tokoname chops and the associated potters I found somewhere a few years ago, but can't upload it because it's a PDF. PM me with your email address if you're interested and I'll email it to you.
 
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Thanks Brian!!

Ta-Da! The Chop lists....

Please note that credit is listed on the images to the Tokoname site that produced it.

This is very cool....:D

Kindest regards,

Victrinia
 

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Smoke

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The good one is no longer available. My chop portfolio is 17 pages long with color pictures of each chop when available.
 
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Seriously dear... it's called a scanner.... lay paper down.... hit button... render to PDF... :D

Hugs,

V
 

Brian Van Fleet

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The good one is no longer available. My chop portfolio is 17 pages long with color pictures of each chop when available.
Last fall Sue(?) who orders the Tokoname pots for the Monastery in GA told me that many of the kilns are no longer firing pots; that they're down to just a few right now. She also mentioned that the unglazed pots are the variety that are becoming scarce as a result.

@ Vic...thanks for loading the images!

@Al...come on brother...you're holding out on us! Load it up!
 
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