Aizu Hongo YakiAizu Hongo Ware

Because we baked tile to use for roof of Kurokawa Castle of Aizu Wakamatsu (young Matsushiro) for the age of civil strife, it is said that grilled manufacturing began. Because we protected grilled manufacturing, and feudal lord of Aizu feudal clan brought up early in the Edo era, Aizu Hongo Yaki prospered as order kiln of Aizu feudal clan. Production of container of living for general people began afterwards, too.
We received blow by Boshin War of the late Tokugawa period or big fire of the Taisho era, but we recover ourselves again and are continuing producing grilled dish now. In addition, it is production center of the oldest white porcelain in Tohoku.

It seems that the making of pottery started here during the Sengoku period (1428-1573), when tiles to roof a castle in Aizuwakamatsu were being made. Then, during the early years of the Edo period (1600-1868) Hoshina Masayuki, who led the Aizu clan, saw a need to patronize and further the making of pottery, and the production of what became Aizu Hongo Yaki ware flourished under the supervision of the clan. This subsequently led to the making of everyday pieces of pottery for use by people at large. Production of ceramics here suffered badly due to fighting just prior to the Meiji Restoration in 1868 and as a result of a devastating fire in the Taisho period (1912-1926). The industry recovered, however, and is still thriving today. It has the distinction of being the oldest area where white porcelain is produced in the whole of northeastern Japan.

Both pottery and porcelain are being made here. In some cases, both pottery and porcelain are being produced at the same kiln. The porcelain is gazed with celadon and there are many other wares being produced using colors derived from both Japanese and Western pigments. The pottery made tends to be very practical. For some of these pieces such traditional glazes as an amber colored glaze and an ash glaze are used. A full range of tableware is made alongside tea cups and pots, flower vases, and sake flasks and cups.

  • Notification

    skills and techniques

    Molding is thing by the next technique or technique.

    It is thing by hatatara molding potter's wheel molding, hand twist molding again.

    Drain bag which sharpen, and does molding finish and wet wiping finish of the whole surface of basis material to have property that is equal to case by molding method that others, basis material by molding method to publish in (1) raise in (1) when is to porcelain; thing by molding or "drain two folds molding."

    When do design charge account of basis material, vomit pressing a flower design in intaglio, combed line, and take eyes, itchin assortment, aspect, and stick, thing by the texture, engobe or carving.

    When do china-painting with underglaze color, line drawing, tab stand, and dip, and be accompanied; is hadaminiyorukoto again.
    In this case, paint has with "red iron paint" or "copper paint" "asbolite paint".

    Is about to dip, and is about to drain or paint with glaze hook; thing by credit.
    In this case, "knit, and "we drain white, and "blue drain, and "ojiuwagusuri" say with "crackle glaze" or "milk white glaze" "copper glaze" "iron glaze" glaze" glaze" glaze" "soil ash glaze" when there is "ojiuwagusuri" or "crystal glaze" to earthenware "copper glaze" "iron glaze" "sea cucumber glaze" "celadon porcelain glaze" "stone ash glaze" "tree ash glaze" when there is glaze to porcelain.

    When do overglazing, line drawing, tab stand; is hadaminiyorukoto again.

    Raw materials

    When there is potter's clay to use to porcelain, and there is "Okubo soil" to thing, earthenware which "gravel soil" has materials which are equal to "stomach soil" or these, say that "Matoba clay" has materials which are equal to "Okubo soil" or these.


  • Work scenery

    Process 1: Weather-beaten

    Soil thrown out is piled up and is exposed to wind and rain more than one year.

    Process 2: Soil kneading on fire

    We crush soil and remove coarse thing by sieve and we add water and work out.

    Video is played when we click image

    Process 3: Potter's wheel molding

    We put soil in the center of disk of potter's wheel, and hit water with both hands in spite of being concrete facing, and we postpone while turning potter's wheel and push soil when it becomes homogeneous and postpone and we do and put iron in the circular shape to hope for by the right hand inward, and calm down in center and be set and push up form toward the upper part while supporting the left hand from the outside. We turn off potter's wheel and put dragonfly and decide dimensions and turn potter's wheel again and smooth off the edge circumference with cowhide.

    Video is played when we click image

    Process 4: Drying

    There are naturally drying and ustulation and assumes moisture of molded article minimal quantity. There is thing to perform after the unglazing that we do china-painting with underglaze color to dry molded article directly.

    Process 5: Burning

    We bake while devising to light gas kiln burner or burner of kerosene kiln and electric kiln, and to do jonetsu, and to average room temperature. Burning temperature of this case is 900 degrees from 800 degrees by oxidizing flame burning, and burning time is approximately ten hours.

    Process 6: Getting out kiln

    We anneal thing which burnt in kiln for 30 hours from five hours and make getting out kiln.

    Process 7: Inspection

    Baked product sorts defective article.


  • Close-up

    The skill that we took home with us from Arida, technique of white porcelain dyed pattern

    Because beginning of Aizu Hongo Yaki let castle repair bake tile (tile) in occasion when Aizu is entrusted with by Hideyoshi Toyotomi, and Ujisato Gamo did nyufu in 1593 (Bunroku 2), it begins. Then we appeared on right desperate espionage and trip that it should be said for Arida that Ihee Sato who dreamed of making white porcelain with here Hongo learned technique of white porcelain and took to go after the times. As for the technique of white porcelain, it was completed from the departure of 1797 (Kansei 9) for more than 200 years by pupil government official for chores good luck gate-guard office. Masahiro Watanabe is the fifth generation by Mt. Otori kiln. We still succeed the traditional skill of this white porcelain dyeing that was the skill of innovation.


    Modernity of Italy soldier of the Imperial Guard and white porcelain

    Great achievement by Italy soldier of the Imperial Guard takes root in Hongo after longtime trial and error. Technique of white porcelain dyed pattern is clear for the Meiji period, and fame of Aizu Hongo Yaki will come to the whole country. It is the hills and rivers, flowers and birds poetic genius basically to be created to white porcelain. It can nod that the appearance that is delicate so as to be enchanted, and is elegant had strong admiration to earthenware that old lords are white. From big thing of pot and plate, carafe, cooled hot water such as teapot, anything including teacup are full of Oriental beauty. However, that craftsmen of dyed pattern decrease, and work which such a technique needs decreases. Watanabe summarized way of Italy soldier of the Imperial Guard of life and left documents at the time in one book. Modernity to include dignity that modernity of way of Italy soldier of the Imperial Guard of life that is wild and white porcelain dyed pattern bring on. As universal modaniti which did not let you feel oldness at all, it was crystallized in village of the oldest white porcelain, here Aizu Hongo in Tohoku.

    • Rare production center where Aizu Hongo Yaki produces both earthenware, porcelain. There is both place producing in one pottery. Blue bloom pattern that all the porcelain is freehand drawings, and Fumi Yamamoto, a lot of asbolite pictures of flowers and birds sentence are elegant

    • Earthenware assumes traditional color glaze base, and work warm is frequent in simplicity

    Container for day, joy to make

    "It was distribution that we let Toiya go through to charges of father, but folk handicraft became boom by exercise by Bernard Leach and was reviewed. Then foot of visitor extended to here Hongo, and talks began with direct visitor." We make loved everyday container while feeling importance of Watanabe being devoted to creator and talk about importance of actual feeling handing. In ceramic art classroom which began being friend and three people, student goes from far away. We are full of life every time and seem to be devoted to production from student, "next will make that" saying "we are asked for like this by family this time". "After all saying is saying is fun"; Watanabe. We value joy of creating things. By Mt. Otori kiln of Watanabe, design of container and painting to porcelain change with the change of food culture, and current daily necessities including beer cup with flower of bright Botan increase amorous glances.

    Elegant white porcelain blue-and-white porcelain

    Breathe fresh air

    Watanabe studied at university of Tokyo before inheriting business of the fifth generation and trained ourselves in Kyoto. We associated with caliber from place that left hometown for a long time wrong. Fresh air which Watanabe breathed entered Mt. Otori kiln, and tradition increased touch of own arm of a river. Unlike old days, craftsmen who divided the work disappeared and came to make all processes by oneself. In creating containers "go out and is made first study thing, that of land absorbing air. It lives there, and it makes friend, and it is familiar with the land, and it becomes later big property to breathe the same air, Watanabe records air of other life that oneself spent on the making of container. And we are reconfirming white porcelain dyed pattern of Aizu Hongo Yaki due to late hand with own eyes now.
    Something like way of life that you should succeed white porcelain dyed pattern that has been succeeded for Watanabe by minute effort from generation to generation. We take trouble, too, and concentration is not averageness, too. When "we will increase dyed patterns of white porcelain from now on and do not take good care," the history is entrusted to hand of Watanabe.

    • Masahiro Watanabe

    • Modern daily necessities


    Day functional beauty, herring bowl

    Representative local cuisine of Aizu is soaked in Japanese pepper of herring. We lacked in the position and pickled herring with liquor and soy sauce and leaf of Japanese pepper. It is herring bowl to have been made to soak this herring soaked in Japanese pepper. Usability that it is excellent to repeat at size as herring just enters, and to pickle. This herring bowl was made with potter as daily necessities from old days.
    Aizu Hongo Yaki calls earthenware used for daily use "sodabutsu" for porcelain full of dignity. Herring bowl is one, too. With square bowl of encouraging news that candy glaze which became blackish was hung, it was evaluated as functional beauty on day when the simple simplicity was functional, and even Brussels World Exposition won the grand prix in 1958.





Industrial art object name Aizu Hongo Yaki
Phonetic symbol aizuhongoyaki
Classification of industrial art object Ceramics
Main product Dining table article, tea set, vase, bottle and cup
Main production area Fukushima / Aizumisato-machi, Onuma-gun
The designation date July 2, 1993

Contact information

■local production associations

Aizu Hongo Yaki business cooperative association
3162, Setomachikou, Aizumisato-machi, Onuma-gun, Fukushima
TEL: 0242-56-3007
FAX: 0242-93-6035

■Associated exhibit space, facility


It is production center preparing earthenware, both porcelain into. There is place cooking both grilled dish in one manufacturer. To porcelain, there are various kinds such as polychromatic pictures using dyed pattern and Japan using blue paint called asbolite and Western paint. As for the earthenware, a lot of practical things are made. Traditional glazes (say bake) such as rain glaze (say) or ash glaze (we buy and say) are used for them.

The Aizu Hongo region of Fukushima prefecture produces both soft-paste and hard-paste porcelains. There are even individual makers who produce both varieties. There are many varieties of hard-paste porcelains including those with only designs of gosu blue, and others which have designs which use a variety of Japanese and Western colors. Soft-paste porcelain is used to make a wide array of items used in every day life. A variety of traditional glazes for the soft-paste porcelains are used, including clear glaze, ash glaze and white glaze.

How to make

On turntable called potter's wheel, we make form mainly while turning clay. In addition, there are things making form using handbuilding, gypsum mold creating forms only by shi utataraya, hand with clay which we cut into a board form. We assume clay for chinaware for porcelain produced from hometown and potter's clay for earthenware main raw materials, and each potter concentrates original invention and makes various works.

Aizu Hongo Yaki pieces are primarily made by turning the clay on a potter’s wheel. Additional methods also used include cutting the piece from a sheet of porcelain clay, shaping the piece entirely by hand-working, and also using a plaster cast to mold the clay. Local porcelain stones and clay earth serve as the primary raw materials, and a variety of independent, ingenious methods can be found at each pottery to produce the wide array of styles produced in the region.