Tosen Kiln Thunder God Kiyomizu Ware Cafe au lait Mug

JPY ¥22,000

Featuring the distinctive “nami-yu” glaze, which is made from the ashes of the Kyoto forest, this Cafe au lait Mug has a natural base color in yellowish cream-white. 

This particular piece, presents the deities of "Raijin" (Thunder God)Not only is he the deity of the supernatural but is also believed to be the attendants of the wise Buddha. The Thunder God holds a ring of drums. You can enjoy the company of a miniature thunder god entertaining your everyday tea or coffee.

Founded in 1868 as a Kiyomizu ware wholesaler in Kyoto, Tosen Kiln uses its own blend of clay and glaze, preserving the methods and quality of the works of Nonomura Ninsei, the renowned potter who is said to have established the art of Kyo ware in the 17th century.

The paintwork is done by individual Japanese-style painters, pursuing their own originality and depth beyond the expectations of mere decorations. 

If held with the right hand, we see the portrait of the Thunder God riding on the blue cloud sprinkled with gold. The mug is very light, and the handle is stroked by a hand written line of gold. The blue ribbon of the Thunder God just extends to the top of the cup and folds to the inside. The other side of the mug is just faintly brushed with gold, glittering its shine on top of its warm cream white body. 

The drawings are directly painted onto the bisqued surface of the mug which requires unique skills as paint is quickly absorbed by the clay surface. The art of underglaze painting uses more restraint colors of blue and brown, giving the piece a more subdued impression. As the paint is absorbed, the result is a more lucid and transparent finish of the delicate brush work, as opposed to the more solid pigments of overglazed painting. The finishing touch to the handle and the bottom of the mug is a lining of gold. Due to its delicate characteristics, gold can only be applied as an overglaze to truly display its beautiful color. 

Tosen Kiln introduces the timeless techniques of Kiyomizu ware through their delicate hand painting and modeling styles. The intricate paintings on the stoneware breathe warmth and beauty into the pieces and tell stories of the diligence needed to create them.


  • Dimension: D9.2cm(3.6in) x H7.8cm(3.1in)
  • Capacity: 300ml(9.5oz)
  • Material: Stoneware
  • Origin: Made in Japan - Kiyomizu Ware
  • Brand: Tosen Kiln


Tosen Kiln introduces the traditional techniques of Kiyomizu ware through their delicate hand painting and modeling styles.

The intricate paintings breathe warmth and beauty into their pieces and tell stories of the diligence needed to create them.

View more Tosen Kiln's Items

ABOUT Kyo Ware and Kiyomizu Ware

"Emblematic Pottery Flourishes in the Old Capital of Japan"

Kyo ware and Kiyomizu ware is one of Kyoto's representative crafts. Its a traditional craft designated by the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, named Kyo-yaki or Kiyomizu-yaki in Japanese.

There is no specific style, and all pottery techniques from various regions of Japan are used. Another characteristic of Kyo ware is that all processes, such as pottery wheel turning and painting, are done by hand. With a history that has developed along with traditional culture, Kyo ware is characterized by delicate painting and excellent modeling skills, resulting in ceramics of great elegance and highly pictorial qualities. Kyo ware and Kiyomizu ware were designated as traditional crafts by the Japanese government in 1977 and are very popular for its artistic quality.

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