Hasami, a pottery production area in Nagasaki Prefecture
Hasami is located in the central northern part of Nagasaki Prefecture. It is famous for producing Hasami ware and has a history of over 400 years. Even today, it is a town that is closely connected to our daily lives, boasting a 16% share of daily tableware. Although Hasami is a small town with a total area of about 56 km2 and a population of about 15,000, the reason why it is one of Japan's leading pottery production areas is because of its land. It has a lot to do with the nature of the. Even today, 20 to 30% of the people work in pottery, and most of the 15,000 people make their living around ceramics, showing that it is truly a ceramics town.
History of Hasami
Hasami ware was created by potters who came from the Korean Peninsula during the Azuchi-Momoyama period. At first, the company mainly produced clay pottery, but when pottery stone used for white porcelain was discovered in Mimata, right next to Hasami Town, porcelain production began in earnest. Hasami was formed in the valley of Mt. Nakao, and there was a route over the mountain that connected to Mimata, where pottery stone was transported.
The town of Hasami is formed along the valley, and pottery stone can be obtained from the mountains.
Characteristics of Hasami ware
Hasami ware is characterized by the beauty of its white porcelain and the delicate dyeing technique used to paint it with gosu (indigo). Continuing to improve it in accordance with the times, a variety of everyday tableware was born as utensils for the common people. The ``Kurawanka Bowl'', which has an arabesque pattern easily drawn with a brush, is durable and hard to break, and is a masterpiece of Hasami ware.
Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten HP
The adoption of a ``division of labor'' system has a lot to do with making high quality, mass production possible in a small town with a population of approximately 15,000. A system was set up that included a ``mold shop'' that made plaster molds for ceramics, a ``fabric shop'' that made dough from the molds, a ``pot shop'' that stored clay in the fabric shop, and a ``kiln shop'' that baked the dough and finished it into products. This is also a big feature. Due to the division of labor, each workshop has improved its specialized skills, and the overall level of Hasami ware has also improved, which is why the town still has a large production volume.
Alley and mountain scenery of Hasami
What takes your breath away in Hasami is the beautiful nature and narrow paths formed in the mountain valleys. There are 16 potteries lined up in the mountain valley, and the alley space that follows the shape of nature along the steep slope gives you an indescribable nostalgic feeling. Also, when you step out of that alley, you can see the breathtaking view surrounded by Mt. Nakao, and there are probably no other towns like this in the world.
Although we now live in an age where we can enjoy things and things anywhere, we believe that there are hints to enriching our lives by learning about Japan's ancient aesthetic sensibilities and ways of living. In addition to disseminating information about towns, architecture, crafts, and food that are connected to Japan's ancient aesthetic sensibilities, we also operate a select shop that focuses on handicrafts. If you are interested, please check the select shops as well.