Different ceramics and variations
Grandmasters of the Japanese tea ceremony were always searching for the most suitable pottery and ceramics to use for serving tea. Every tea master had his own preference for a certail clay type or school of pottery which had distinct colors and shapes. There are six main schools of pottery recognized for their long history and popularity in Japan:
Bizen yaki: Japanese unglazed ceramic. This high-fired ceramic ware is produced in the city of Bizen (town of Imbe, now Okayama Prefecture); It is known for its long firings in climbing kilns, with resulting heavy ash deposits and other effects. Bizen yaki originated in 12th century.
Echizen Yaki: Japanese unglazed ceramic. This high-fired ceramic ware is produced in Echizen domain (now Fukui Prefecture), influenced by the Sueki wares of the Heian Period (794-1192).
Seto yaki: Japanese high-fired ceramic ware produced in the Seto and Mino domains (Gifu Prefecture). It is famous for its production of shino, yellow seto, black seto, and oribe. Originated in late 16th century. Oribe ware is named after the great tea master Furuta Shigenari also known as Furuta Oribe. Oribe ware is most identifiable for its use of green copper glaze and bold painted design. Furuta Oribe was the founder of the Oribe school of tea ceremony called Oribe Ryuu. He was particularly fond of this Oribe ware and often used this kind of ceramic in his preparation of green tea.
Shigaraki yaki: Japanese high-fired, unglazed ceramic ware produced in Shigaraki, Shiga Prefecture; famous for ash deposits and distinctive forms; originated around 12th century, spread from Tokoname and Atsumi.
Tamba yaki: Japanese ceramic ware, produced in Tachikui, Hyogo Prefecture (near Kyoto). Tamba ware originated in the medieval period, and is typically a style used for storage jars and vases.
Tokoname yaki: a Japanese high-fired, ash-glazed ceramic ware produced in the region of Sanage, (now Aichi Prefecture); inspired by Chinese celadons; originated around the 9th century.