Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!


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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby wyardley » Dec 19th, '12, 03:00

MarshalN wrote:I believe Yixing clay as normally used and processed and composed is not throwable. To make it throwable the first thing you need to do is to make it more malleable - I don't think it just becomes "softer" on its own without you adding things to it (moisture, perhaps, or other substances). In any case, having done so, what you have is no longer the same thing.

Would you consider slipcast Yixing to be the same thing then, since moisture is added to make it pourable? I am not only trying to play devil's advocate here, but to me, it's not really clear cut.

Like many people, I would prefer to avoid slipcast Yixing for the most part, but I wouldn't necessarily go so far as to say that a slipcast Yixing pot is not Yixing.

I do think that the traditional method of construction is an important part of the craft. But there are certainly plenty of relatively recent (let's say since the 80s or so) changes to the way pots are made which veer from tradition - types of kilns, method of processing the raw material, additives, etc.
Last edited by wyardley on Dec 19th, '12, 03:21, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby 135F2 » Dec 19th, '12, 03:16

This is a clay teapot that I bought not more than 2 days ago in Taipei. I know almost nothing about pots and how they are made.

It looked to me like a Yixing teapot. It even has Zhongguo Yixing stamp on the pot's bottom. But the seller told me that this is actually a Taiwanese Yingge pot made with Yingge clay. This is not a Yixing. If I have to guess, the clay was thrown and shaped on a wheel.

A layman if not told what is what would probably mistake this as a Yixing pot. I know I would.

I bought it anyway. It's cheap, it's cute and it pours beautifully :)

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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby Tead Off » Dec 19th, '12, 05:10

There are many Yingde and other Taiwanese pots that look like Yixing because of the traditional pot shapes and the color of the clays that they use. Those are clearly not Yixing in any way.

What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production. I just don't know enough about the processing to make the claim that an Yixing clay teapot is not a real Yixing clay teapot if made on a wheel.
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby wyardley » Dec 19th, '12, 05:25

Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8
It's likely that kaolin is not added, because it would adversely affect color in the quantities that would be necessary to make the clay plastic enough to throw (usually 10-20%). Instead, ball clay with similar natural colorants to the yixing body it intends to plasticize would be a likely addition. Many ball clays ranging from white to dark brown exist naturally.

Even more likely, plasticizers like bentonite (an ultra plastic small particle clay) are added in portions of 2 percent or less. See here: http://digitalfire.com/4sight/material/ … e_106.html . There are other organic plasticizers that burn out more or less completely, but I'm not sure that yixing potters have access to these like we do in the US?

So yes, I think additives of some kind (besides water) are needed to make it possible to wheel throw zisha. For slipcasting, I'm not 100% sure, but I think it can be done simply by making essentially a slip out of the zisha (increasing its moisture content).

My understanding from talking to bears3x is that modern processing methods mostly eliminate the need to weather the clay for literally years before use. Of course, we all hear the stories about such and such clay being stored for years, and while it's possible that some of them are true, I believe that it's no longer necessary to weather / decompose the raw material for extended periods of time before use.

Also, while I can't comment on the truth of any of the claims, nor on what type of material is being used in the video, take a look at this page (and the video it links to):
http://www.freehead.com/forum.php?mod=v ... 972&page=1
(refers to the prejudice against wheel thrown "Yixing", and links to a video of someone making pots using this method).

originally linked to from:
http://houdeblog.com/?p=115
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby bagua7 » Dec 19th, '12, 06:20

wyardley wrote:originally linked to from:
http://houdeblog.com/?p=115


Thanks for a link I never came across before. Something new I learned today:

There are in general four kinds of yixing formation methods:

1. “Da Sheng Tong” for round-shaped formation or “Xiang Sheng Tong” for square-shaped formation

2. “Dang Pei” that uses two pieces of molds to aide the formation of usually round shape.

3. Hand-thrown on wheel.

4. Slipcasting, in which a liquid clay is poured into plaster molds to form the body, usually for mass-production.

(3) and (4) are not traditional Yixing formation method. (3), the hand-thrown method, is popular in Shan tou and Taiwan systems.


So I assume that my shui ping is a non-traditional Yixing, isn't it? :mrgreen: But I was so happy thinking it was really Taiwanese. :cry:

Can anyone clarify what are exactly Taiwanese zhu ni pots?
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby Tead Off » Dec 19th, '12, 07:18

wyardley wrote:
Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8


Thanks for the link. Interesting discussion between Chrl42 and Bears. :D :-)
In light of all this, one could say the teapots made in the slab-constructed way and using only mined Yixing clay without additives, are considered 'traditional' Yixing teapots. This might have more interest to those who are collectors or people who insist on having only this type of teapot for investment purposes. For those who are mainly tea drinkers and want teapots made of Yixing clay, judging by what Bears has said about any additives used to plasticize the clay for throwing, it seems to have little to do with changing the clay adversely for tea drinking. So we might assume that wheel thrown Yixing pots can be quite okay for brewing.
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby MarshalN » Dec 19th, '12, 10:20

Tead Off wrote:
wyardley wrote:
Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8

Thanks for the link. Interesting discussion between Chrl42 and Bears. :D :-)
In light of all this, one could say the teapots made in the slab-constructed way and using only mined Yixing clay without additives, are considered 'traditional' Yixing teapots. This might have more interest to those who are collectors or people who insist on having only this type of teapot for investment purposes. For those who are mainly tea drinkers and want teapots made of Yixing clay, judging by what Bears has said about any additives used to plasticize the clay for throwing, it seems to have little to do with changing the clay adversely for tea drinking. So we might assume that wheel thrown Yixing pots can be quite okay for brewing.

But the question is whether it is ok or not to call them Yixing pots. I would lean on the side of "no".
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby Tead Off » Dec 19th, '12, 11:49

MarshalN wrote:
Tead Off wrote:
wyardley wrote:
Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8

Thanks for the link. Interesting discussion between Chrl42 and Bears. :D :-)
In light of all this, one could say the teapots made in the slab-constructed way and using only mined Yixing clay without additives, are considered 'traditional' Yixing teapots. This might have more interest to those who are collectors or people who insist on having only this type of teapot for investment purposes. For those who are mainly tea drinkers and want teapots made of Yixing clay, judging by what Bears has said about any additives used to plasticize the clay for throwing, it seems to have little to do with changing the clay adversely for tea drinking. So we might assume that wheel thrown Yixing pots can be quite okay for brewing.

But the question is whether it is ok or not to call them Yixing pots. I would lean on the side of "no".

From which side of the equation?
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby needaTEAcher » Dec 19th, '12, 19:34

MarshalN wrote:
Tead Off wrote:
wyardley wrote:
Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8

Thanks for the link. Interesting discussion between Chrl42 and Bears. :D :-)
In light of all this, one could say the teapots made in the slab-constructed way and using only mined Yixing clay without additives, are considered 'traditional' Yixing teapots. This might have more interest to those who are collectors or people who insist on having only this type of teapot for investment purposes. For those who are mainly tea drinkers and want teapots made of Yixing clay, judging by what Bears has said about any additives used to plasticize the clay for throwing, it seems to have little to do with changing the clay adversely for tea drinking. So we might assume that wheel thrown Yixing pots can be quite okay for brewing.

But the question is whether it is ok or not to call them Yixing pots. I would lean on the side of "no".


I think another important question here is where do fact and opinion collide? "I would lean on the side of 'no'." makes it sound like opinion, whereas earlier posts sound like it is a fact. Who, ultimately, decides this stuff?
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby MarshalN » Dec 19th, '12, 20:33

needaTEAcher wrote:
MarshalN wrote:
Tead Off wrote:
wyardley wrote:
Tead Off wrote:What is not clear in this discussion is what is the processing of Yixing clay in order to make it throwable. Does it involve the addition of anything but water? Even Yixing clays are subjected to soaking in water in order to make them usable for the traditional slab-making technique that is regarded as 'true' Yixing. I've even read about a 'fermentation' process that some clays were put through, sometimes for years, before they were used for production


bears3x would know better, but I believe something besides liquid is needed to make it throwable. He theorizes that another type of clay would be blended with it, or smaller quantities of a "plasticizer" would be added. You can see some discussion over here:
http://teadrunk.org/topic/68/does-anyon ... this-logo/
esp. #8

Thanks for the link. Interesting discussion between Chrl42 and Bears. :D :-)
In light of all this, one could say the teapots made in the slab-constructed way and using only mined Yixing clay without additives, are considered 'traditional' Yixing teapots. This might have more interest to those who are collectors or people who insist on having only this type of teapot for investment purposes. For those who are mainly tea drinkers and want teapots made of Yixing clay, judging by what Bears has said about any additives used to plasticize the clay for throwing, it seems to have little to do with changing the clay adversely for tea drinking. So we might assume that wheel thrown Yixing pots can be quite okay for brewing.

But the question is whether it is ok or not to call them Yixing pots. I would lean on the side of "no".


I think another important question here is where do fact and opinion collide? "I would lean on the side of 'no'." makes it sound like opinion, whereas earlier posts sound like it is a fact. Who, ultimately, decides this stuff?


Nobody, in some ways, and everybody at the same time. However, I think many will agree that they'd be unhappy if bought as "yixing" pot and then finding out that the pot they bought is quite different from what they thought they were getting - watered down clay, thrown on a wheel, with stuff added in (we have no idea what).
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby Chip » Dec 19th, '12, 20:38

+1

How could one selling pots call them Yixing pots when they are made elsewhere? Again I would say clarity is important. So, Teapot made with Yixing Clay in Taiwan would be clear. More clarity would be better, such as wheel thrown, additives, etc.

Idealistic, maybe ... but isn't Yixing as a whole already too complicated for the mere mortal man without this bit of clarity?
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby tea_love » Dec 19th, '12, 21:21

tingjunkie wrote:I was feeling a bit creative, and decided to make a little Yixing porn... :mrgreen: All of these pots were acquired in a little over a year after buying my first one. Let this be a warning for those getting in to Yixing! :shock:

Image

Image


This is a true...PORN Mike :lol:
love all your pots. Good warning for me. I bought 3 pots in my first month to Yixing already....Now I listen to your guidelines, buying a gaiwan today :lol:
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby tingjunkie » Dec 19th, '12, 22:52

tea_love wrote:This is a true...PORN Mike :lol:
love all your pots. Good warning for me. I bought 3 pots in my first month to Yixing already....Now I listen to your guidelines, buying a gaiwan today :lol:


Smart man! The gaiwan and some practice brewing with good teas will save you paying a lot of "tuition" on your journey. :wink:

It may be time for a new family photo... my collection has grown a lot since I took those. :mrgreen:
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby ImmortaliTEA » Dec 20th, '12, 00:44

tingjunkie wrote:
tea_love wrote:This is a true...PORN Mike :lol:
love all your pots. Good warning for me. I bought 3 pots in my first month to Yixing already....Now I listen to your guidelines, buying a gaiwan today :lol:


Smart man! The gaiwan and some practice brewing with good teas will save you paying a lot of "tuition" on your journey. :wink:

It may be time for a new family photo... my collection has grown a lot since I took those. :mrgreen:


I for one would be greatly interested in seeing a new family photo TJ as it was you, Tim, B, MarshalN, Will, Charly, and a few others that really inspired my yixing journey to begin (not to mention that enlightening experience in NY). I have learned so much from you guys and teachat in general and just have to say thank you all for your wisdom & guidance and look forward to seeing some new additions to your collection. (By the way, my favorite pot of yours to this day is still the 80 ml Aged Sheng Script Chop Pin Zini as I absolutely love the shape on that one).
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Re: Official/Different Yixing Show Off Topic!

Postby tingjunkie » Dec 20th, '12, 01:55

ImmortaliTEA wrote:I for one would be greatly interested in seeing a new family photo TJ as it was you, Tim, B, MarshalN, Will, Charly, and a few others that really inspired my yixing journey to begin (not to mention that enlightening experience in NY). I have learned so much from you guys and teachat in general and just have to say thank you all for your wisdom & guidance and look forward to seeing some new additions to your collection. (By the way, my favorite pot of yours to this day is still the 80 ml Aged Sheng Script Chop Pin Zini as I absolutely love the shape on that one).



Thanks bro, but I'm not sure my name belongs up with those titans of teapots! :lol: I'm just happy to be able to pass down a little bit of knowledge and advice from the very knowledgeable and generous teachers I've had.

...and my pin zini aged sheng pot is one of my faves too!
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