Pottery Raku Rapture


Raku bowl master at Asukagama, Takumi Nakashima

 Raku bowl master at Asukagama, Takumi Nakashima




Japanese Shoraku Sasaki chawan-RubyLane

 Japanese chawan in the traditional red and black by Shoraku Sasaki

This bowl received an award from the monk Kankei Moriyama.(1888-1955) and was named “Yume” – which means a dream.

( RubyLane )

Origins of Raku


The originator of raku in Japan was Sasaki Chojiro, who first produced raku pieces for the Japanese tea ceremony in the 16th century. He learnt the technique from his father Ameya, who was trained in the Ming Dynasty Sencai pottery tradition and was brought to Kyoto, Japan from China. The original chawan tea bowls were red and black and called ‘ Imma yaki ‘ These colors were favored because they represented the Yang elements which are grounding and support the tea ceremony principals of contemplation and austerity. This was further enhanced by using simple hand crafted forms while being balanced with the Yin forces of the abstract, asymmetrical shapes and the ethereal quality of the mysterious raku textures, appearance and colours.




Nweka  –  Josette Boyer, France




Glo Coalson's-three raku-pigeons

Three raku pigeons – Glo Coalson

Raku Procedures


Despite Raku being primarily decorative and rarely used for functional purposes, Raku has maintained a healthy level of popularity in the West. Some of the reasons for this are the diversity of  lustres and unique colours that are attainable, the creation of desirable crackle effects, the dramatic and exciting production process, the versatility of the glazes,  the unpredictable  “ one of a kind  “ outcomes and the relatively fast results that can be achieved. Adherents have also been drawn to Raku because of its deep tradition in the Japanese culture.
After the initial formation of the clay pieces which have then been dried, bisqued and cooled, they are ready for glazing. The glaze can be applied by spraying, brushing, dipping the piece in a glaze or drizzled.  After glazing the piece it is then re-fired in a raku kiln. The decorated pieces are fired again to 1800 F and within about an hour, when the desired melting of the glazes have been achieved, they are immediately removed while still glowing with special raku tongs ( the dramatic stage ) and quickly placed into a metal container filled with organic materials such as straw, leaves, pine needles, sawdust or paper, then quickly sealed to be smoked and cooled down.
The thermal shock causes the glazes to craze and carbon fills the cracks giving the glaze it’s distinctive crackle appearance, especially with the white based glazes. As the piece sits in the combustion chamber, the decreased oxygen causes a chemical reaction in the glazes, resulting in metallic, iridescent colors. One glaze can produce a variety of colors as flashing occurs in areas that are exposed to more or less amounts of oxygen. The colors achieved are spontaneous and unable to be replicated.
The natural un-glazed clay will become black from the smoking environment, while the glazed areas, due to the rapid cooling, will have the desirable crackle effect and/or look of lustres to the glaze. The piece is then cooled by quenching with water and cleaned. The glaze firing and reduction process generally takes between one to two hours. A raku kiln can be fired in 20 minutes, as opposed to 12 hours for a regular kiln. All these above factors have made Raku a popular choice for pottery workshops which has contributed to its growth.




This piece was fired with a copper bearing glaze that ages and mellows as it gets older Non functional, decorative use only

3.3″ h -x- 5.7″ w

Ron Mello Studio on Etsy



Huge abstract sculpture-in the technique of raku-by Roger Capron

 Large abstract raku fired sculpture by Roger Capron.



Custom raku bottle---2013-Ryan-Peters

 Raku bottle by Ryan Peters

 black and white raku jar Andy Smith

  Black and white lidded raku jar – Andy Smith




 Athena Raku fired sculpture

2 artstudios



bol_raku_2013 Jacques-Tissot,-in-Fribourg-(Switzerland)

 Raku Bowl –  Jacques Tissot, Fribourg (Switzerland)



Caffeine-Buzz-teapot 2013-Ryan-Peters

Caffeine Buzz teapot – Ryan Peters



clayguyryRyanPeters raku lidded jar

 Ryan Peters raku lidded jar




Current-Work---Ryan Peters Raku Pottery

Ryan Peters Raku Pottery



Dance of The Seven Raku Vases-Catherine Rehbein

 Dance of The Seven Raku Vases – Catherine Rehbein





Eena Miller -- Fern Naked Raku

 Naked Raku Fern dish – Eena Miller



Nicole-Petrescu-on-Flickr Raku earthenware on wood board

 Raku earthenware on wood board  – Nicole Petrescu

Nicole Petrescu – Flickr


Raku sculptural vase – Shaun Hall

Letsgetmuddy flickr Raku horsehair pottery vase

Raku horsehair pottery vase –Letsgetmuddy, California

This vase was coated with terra sigillata , a refined slip coating that is used to give a high satin gloss without the use of a glaze and burnished with a small stone at least three times before its initial bisque firing. It was then fired in my raku kiln. When the temperature reached approximately 1500 degrees F. it was removed from the kiln and horse hair held up against the hot pot. The black markings you see are what was left behind.
As the pot cooled it was fumed with an iron solution that gives it a warm fiery hue.

( Letsgetmuddy – flickr )

Jim Romberg, Canyon Moon,-2005

Jim Romberg, ‘Canyon Moon’


Copper Raku Vase by morphingmolecules-etsy

Copper Raku Vase


Ceramic Classic Red Raku Urn - elementalurns

 Classic Red Raku Urn – ElementalUrns – Etsy





Francois Chesneau raku vessel  — la-porte-du-soleil



Horse hair raku bottle saratogaclayarts.gostorego

Horse hair raku bottle –  Saratoga clay arts




Raku bowl by Jacques-Tissot, Fribourg (Switzerland)



la-porte-du-soleil raku disc

 Raku fired sculptural disc – La porte du soleil, France



Built from extruded elements,-raku-fired,-2007-8BrendaDean

Built from extruded elements, then raku fired -Brenda Dean




la-porte-du-soleil raku jar

Raku jar – La porte du soleil


Malcolm Davis raku vase

Malcolm Davis shino glazed ( raku like ) vase



Nita Claise raku fired bottle

Nita Claise


Nita-Claise textured raku bottle

Nita Claise raku pottery



Nita-Claise- raku fired bottle

Raku bottle Nita Claise, Indiana USA



Raku-042 Hand-thrown Scallop Bowl Christopher Mathie

Hand-thrown Scallop Bowl, raku fired –  Christopher Mathie



raku-078 Christopher Mathie Hand thrown & Sculpted Raku Poppy Vessel

Hand thrown & Sculpted Raku Poppy Vessel – Christopher Mathie


 ” 2 Birds in a Tree “—   Raku Bird Feeder’ by ringoffire pottery


Nancy Pene raku


Nancy-Pene raku lidded jar

Lidded raku jar – Nancy Pene

Tim AndrewsTall black and white raku vessels- Tim Andrews

Tall black and white curling pieces – Tim Andrews




Raku Buddha Statue Seated in the Clouds Sculpture-Anita Feng-buddhabulider


 Buddha Statue Seated in the Clouds Sculpture –  raku  – by Anita Feng – buddhabulider



Raku Pottery by Steven Forbe deSoule

Raku Pottery with melted glass by Steven Forbe deSoule




Ribbed Raku vessel by Ron Mello




Saturn Vessel – rakuvessels.com

33”h x 20”w x 20”d




Ron Mello




Raku ovoid vessel – Ron Mello Middleboro-MA,





Brent Skinner -lidded raku pot with handles




Ryan Peters--raku pottery

Ryan Peters



 Mary Kenny




Tim Scull,-ceramic artist doing raku and sagger fired pottery




Tony Evans — Raku Bowl on Wooden Stand




Tweezle Picksniffian -Raku Ceramic by Carole Fleischman



Nita-Claise sculptural bottle

 Nina Clais – sculptural raku bottle




Nina Clais raku teapot

Nina Clais raku teapot




 Raku III  – Thierry FINIDORI (Vallauris)



Ceramic Copper Raku Vase by morphingmolecules etsy

Ceramic Copper Raku Vase

morphingmolecules – etsy

Handcrafted-Raku Maarit Mattanen - Finland

Handcrafted Raku leaves by Maarit Mattanen – Finland





Matte copper reduction raku vase – William K Turner




Raku-Pottery-by-Rick-Lowenkamp lidded vessel

Covered raku jar – Rick Lowenka




  1. robin campo
    Posted August 1, 2014 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    the Malcolm Davis vase is not raku, but cone 10 shino glazed.

  2. jenny
    Posted August 18, 2014 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    hello. i’ve just bought two raku vases that are stamped but i cannot identify the maker. is there an expert out there who could help? i’m happy to send photos.

    thank you so much.

    – jenny

  3. albert riboni
    Posted March 3, 2015 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    beautiful work with great information Thank you

  4. anne darr
    Posted July 17, 2016 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    how do I post my work?
    Anne Darr

  5. Posted December 4, 2017 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    How can someone post images of Raul (my own)?

  6. Gloria C.Joyce
    Posted May 29, 2018 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    ? Why do the ceramic world not know of the Pre-columbian 600AC semi reduction smoke penetrated technique called NEGATIVE decoration which was re-discovered at Chulucanas Piura Peru 1977 by traditional rock&paddle artist potter GERASIMO SOSA ALACHE (1953- )
    Chulucanas located along the upper PIURA River valley had Vicus ceramics done in NEGATIVE-Positive-mixed and sound incorporated vessel? .The find was unearthed there in 1964. (googe>VICUS ceramics on images!) . I posted 7 videos on IT 2010 @ashleybertucci.also better videos on NEGATIVe resist is >Kathleen KLUMPP(9 videos)on VIMEO.
    This ancient semi reduction NEGATIVE carbon penetrated method existed from USa>C America(Maya Classic)>western SOUTH AMERICA.& unrelated @ hallstad-C in Europe (Nat Mus.ZURICH!) I hope someone visits and promotes this work later shared to Nicaragua 1982>Lenca Honduras 1986 & adopted @ Zinapecuaro Michoacan Mexico 27 yrs. later Hernandez Cano workshop.

  7. Ute Müller
    Posted June 25, 2021 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    amazing variety. Really inspiring.

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