Yunotsu potter, Hiroyuki Arao


Yunotsu currently has three kilns close to each other. There are also two large climbing kilns, or noborigama. One of them is still active. Twice a year, this noborigama is used to bake special pottery. For noborigama, pine trees are used as pine rosin creates a high heat in the kiln.  

A local potter, Hiroyuki Arao, has been making pottery since 1996 when he began learning the craft at a specialised school in Kyoto. After graduating from school, he became an apprentice under his father, Koichi Arao. According to Hiroyuki, you can never expect the same result from noborigama because natural conditions directly affect the outcome. The colour of pottery occasionally changes when fired and it sometimes takes on a metallic appearance due to the chemical reactions. This change of colour is called yohen.

“I want to take my time and create things slowly. My master tells me to strive hard and grow steadily, ” says Arao.

At HÏSOM, you can use Arao’s cups and plates and experience his craftsmanship.

Order Arao’s pottery here.









Text by Maki Nakata
Photography by Edward Hames

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