Recommended introduction to Okinawan pottery [Yachimun] and 15 popular artists

Hello! My name is Takezawa, and I am the owner of ``Uchill, a pottery market that you can enjoy at home'' that sells pottery made by artists.

In recent years, Yachimun has become very popular, and our store carries a large number of his works.
Nowadays, it is so popular that some people travel to see the Yachimun pottery market, which is held several times a year.

The morning drama "Chimudondon" that was broadcast in 2022 is set in Okinawa, and "food" is one of the themes.
Champuru and Okinawa soba served in brightly colored yachimun noodles will be featured, so many people may have become interested in them!

Yachimun means "pottery" in the Okinawan dialect.
This term refers to ceramics such as tea bowls, rice bowls, bowls, and flat plates that are still used daily in Okinawan households.

Many of them are plump and thick, and have a heavy appearance, so they go well with dishes piled up on a large platter.

Previously, pottery with traditional patterns was the mainstream, but with the recent increase in the number of young potters, modern designs that are easy to match with Western food are also on the rise.

This time, we would like to introduce Yachimun's style, which is characterized by its powerful painting and thickness, as well as some popular artists.

You can see the works of Okinawan artists we met locally here.

Yachimun list page

Also, this article summarizes the process of purchasing Yachimun, so please check it out.

Yachimun buying journey

Now, for those who would like to know more about Yachimun, we will introduce its characteristics, writers, etc.

What are the characteristics of Yachimun?

Vivid colors

The most distinctive feature of ``Yachimun'' is the vividness of the painting and the vibrant patterns.

The colors are cobalt blue, reminiscent of the blue sea of ​​Okinawa, and green, reminiscent of palm trees and tropical plants.
Also, brown (candy), which is the opposite of these colors, is often used.

Characteristic pattern

A carefree arabesque pattern and a pattern called inka dance on the surface of the vessel.

Dots, which have hand-drawn circular patterns on them, are also a symbolic motif.

Yachimun? Yamuchin? What are the unique Okinawan names and their meanings?

"Yachimun" is a slightly unfamiliar word, so it is easy to mistake it for "Yamuchin".
In Okinawan language

Yachi=Yaki, Mun=Thing


In other words, ``Yachimun'' means pottery, and the pottery made in Okinawa is widely called ``Yachimun.''

In addition, bowls and bowls are called "Makai" and are made in various sizes. The donburi is often called soba makai, and it feels like it's unique to Okinawa, where people eat ``Okinawa soba.''

Although you don't often see them on the mainland, there are also containers that are unique to Okinawa, such as
Awamori containers called Dabichin, and sake vessels called Karakara.

Yachimun conveys the laid-back atmosphere of Okinawa that will make you want to take a deep breath.
Just one such plate will brighten up your everyday dining table.

Artists who enjoy traditional Yachimun

We will introduce artists who enjoy Yachimun-like motifs and color usage.

Traditional Yachimun has the power of Okinawa's warm climate and the power to give you a cheerful feeling.

Toshin kiln

Toshin Gama's works are characterized by their relaxed arabesque patterns.
There are also pottery with a red color called red painting, which gives a classy impression.

The Toshin Kiln was created by Masakazu Soma after training at Ikutoen in Tsuboya.

While preserving the traditional techniques of Tsuboya ware, we continue to create new pieces with the motto of ``always creating something new,'' such as unique red paintings, dyeing, fish patterns, and itchin.

Toshin kiln list page

Pottery komagata

Different artists create different arabesque patterns, giving different impressions.

The gosu and candy-colored tea bowl in the back are Deigo's designs.
The small toothpick holder is also cute.

Also, Komagata's dot dots are two small dots in a row, which is a design you don't often see anywhere else.

Ceramic art list page

Nomo Pottery Manufacturing

It is characterized by beautiful Augsuya (green) painting.
Okinawa dishes such as bitter gourd champuru are of course included, but it would also be interesting to serve pasta dishes such as vongole.

It seems that one person handles the entire process from mixing the glaze to molding, finishing, and firing, which I think is truly amazing.

Nomo Pottery Manufacturing List Page


Mug's Yachimun is irresistible with its muted colors, feminine designs, and cool yet cute texture.
The series of dots looks like bubbles.

mug list page

A writer whose unique style is attractive

In recent years, many artists working in Okinawa are creating works freely without being bound by the traditional Yachimun style.

Although the works have a unique atmosphere that cannot be found anywhere else, they are all works that somehow make you feel the atmosphere of Okinawa.

Issui kiln

Vivid blue and regularly drawn circular and lattice patterns.
We mainly make long rectangular plates with eye-catching decorations and colors.

Issui kiln list page

There is also an article about the Uchiru Editorial Department's visit to Issui Gama's workshop, so please read it here.

Search for your own Okinawa/Yachimun that will free your heart

atelier quccane

The name of the atelier comes from the Japanese word ``eating and sleeping'' and is based on the idea that ``we want people to cherish the act of eating and sleeping, which are essential for human life.''

We have an array of colorful and pop pottery with the theme of ``A life with pottery that makes you smile.''
This is a piece of work that makes you happy just by looking at it.

atelier quccane list page

Clay workshop pottery thread

Nature motifs such as the sea, bubbles, and stars.
You can feel the taste of the patterns and paintings that can only be achieved by hand-painting.

The colors are bright and the vessels are all exciting to use.

Dokobo pottery thread list page

Edme Pottery

We have a kiln in Nakijin, about 3 hours by car from Naha, the center of Okinawa.

The patterns of flowers and dots drawn in quiet areas rich in nature will soothe your soul.

Edme Pottery List Page

Kobo Futagodo

When I first saw Kobo Futado's work, I was impressed and thought, ``The plate is truly a canvas!''

All colorful paintings are hand-painted.
The pictures drawn will be different each time.

It feels so luxurious to be able to eat rice on a plate that looks like art.

Koubo Futago List page

Nan pottery kiln

Nan Togama's works include bright Persian blue vessels and vessels with geometric line patterns.

Works from two completely different directions are both unique and captivating.

Also, the charming shapes of cups and bowls with three or five legs are also attractive.

Nan pottery kiln list page

Kotori Kobo

Works by Kobo Kotori, who has many works with birds as a motif.
The cute works that make you feel like you are in a fantasy world are eye-catching.

The texture of the clay and the candy-colored glaze on the rim of the cup complete the atmosphere of the vessel, making it easy to use at the table and highly practical.

Kotori Kobo List Page

The appeal of Ryukyu glass is not just Yachimun

Do you know about Ryukyu glass?
In Okinawa, there are many cups and other glass products made from blown glass, and these are also very beautiful.

Since it is made from recycled empty bottles, the color of the bottle is reflected in the glass, making it a light blue or yellow color, which is interesting.

Glass studio Seiten

It's plump and a little thick, but it's the texture that gives it a cool impression.

Seiten's glass contains small air bubbles, which give it a smooth texture similar to water.
When exposed to light, it appears slightly greenish, which is unique to Ryukyu glass.

Glass studio Seiten list page

Okuhara Glass Factory

This is also made of glass with a chubby texture, and the edges are decorated with green and brown colors.

The twisted pattern also gives you a cool feeling of flowing water, making it perfect for summer utensils.

Okuhara Glass Manufacturing List Page

Yachimun recommended for first-time buyers

We have briefly introduced Yachimun, but some of you may be wondering what kind of Yachimun you should buy from.

For those who are buying Yachimun for the first time, we recommend a large plate with a gorgeous pattern.

Large plate of 7 cm to 8 cm (approximately 21 cm to 24 cm)

The appeal of the platter is that you can enjoy the ``Yachimun style''.

Okinawa cuisine has many dishes that you want to pile on top of, such as chanpuru and kakuni, so it's useful to have a large Yachimun plate.

From (instagram)

Plates with brightly colored pictures will enhance home-cooked dishes such as simmered dishes, which tend to be brownish and plain, making them much more gorgeous than when served on a regular white plate.

You can also make a picture by placing gyoza arranged in a circle.

7-inch plate, red-painted bougainvillea, pottery, Tsuboya ware, Toshin kiln

The bougainvillea flower motif is sure to complement your dishes.
The plate is deep, so you can serve things like braised braised meat with a lot of juice.

7-inch plate, arabesque pattern, pottery, Edme Pottery

The brightly colored arabesque pattern gives a lively impression.
The design uses bold colors typical of Okinawa, giving it a feel of the lively atmosphere of Okinawa.

I want Yachimun, but I don't know what to buy that will be easy to use or make the dining table look nice!

We recommend that you take the plunge and incorporate a large plate with a bold pattern.

Shops where you can buy Yachimun

Yachimun no Sato

Quote: Yomitan Village Tourism Association

The place where Okinawa's Yachimun gather together is Yachimun no Sato, located in Yomitan Village, about an hour's drive from Naha City.

It has become a tourist attraction, and there were many foreign tourists.
There are 19 workshops here, including the Kitagama that I introduced earlier and several other famous workshops.

It's like visiting each kiln one by one, and each kiln has its own unique characteristics, so it's really fun just to compare them.
You can also see traditional Yachimun works and a large climbing kiln as shown in the photo.

Tsuboya Yachimun Street

Source: Okinawa pottery hometown Tsuboya< /figcaption>

Tsuboya Yachimun Street, near Naha's Kokusai Street, is lined with 45 potteries, shops, and cafes.
There are also fashionable shops and cafes, where you can buy selected items such as Yachimun to take home.

If you don't have time to go to Yachimun no Sato, you can still enjoy it by stopping by here.

Yachimun City (Okinawa pottery market)

Moon Beach Okinawa Zento Yachimun City

Source: Okinawa Story

Okinawa's largest pottery market is held around March every year.

Since potteries scattered all over the island of Okinawa gather together, from young artists in the prefecture to long-established potteries, you can see their unique works.

The venue is indoors, so you can look around in comfort.

Yomitan Yachimun City

Source: Yomitan Village Joint Sales Center

Yomitan Yachimun Market is held near Yachimun Village every December.
Approximately 20,000 people visit in two days, partly because you can buy it cheaper than usual.

Items from popular potteries may sell out soon after opening, so we recommend that you plan your visit in advance.

History of Yachimun

Yachimun's origins date back to 1600, when Okinawa was still called the Ryukyu Kingdom.
Three Korean potters from Satsuma came to the Ryukyu Kingdom to provide technical guidance on pottery, and laid the foundation for today's Yachimun.

Later, in 1682, King Sho Tei of the Ryukyu Kingdom gathered potters from all over the prefecture to Tsuboya, and ``Tsuboya ware'' began, and it developed as it was also used as a gift to the royal government.

In the Meiji period, large quantities of cheap and durable porcelain products began to flow in from the mainland, and Tsuboya ware was gradually in danger of decline.

However, around 1926, the ``Mingei Movement'' began to recognize the beauty of ``Mingei'' as a daily item, and pottery artists such as Muneyoshi Yanagi, Shoji Hamada, and Kanjiro Kawai introduced it to the mainland, and Yachimun was sold all over the country. It spread to

From here, we will introduce various Yachimun artists.

Four artists from the representative pottery "Yomitan Kitagama"

The most famous pottery in Yachimun is called "Yomitan Kitagama."
This kiln is jointly sponsored by four master craftsmen: Yoneji Matsuda, Koji Matsuda, Masamori Yonabaru, and Masahiro Miyagi.

These are popular artists whose products don't arrive in large numbers and sell out as soon as they arrive at shops in Tokyo.

Yomitan Kitagama Yoneji Matsuda

Source: fukugido (Instagram)

It features a gentle touch of painting using traditional colors such as indigo, green, and brown.

It's easy to match with the tableware you have, so it's perfect for serving dishes, as well as rice dishes such as curry and rice bowls.

Yomitan Kitagama Koji Matsuda

Source: moyaikogei (Instagram)

Kyoji is the twin brother of Yoneji Matsuda.
While traditional colors and patterns are used, the clear hues and strong touch are attractive.

It's also a good idea to have a large bowl full of side dishes and place it in the middle of the dining table.

Yomitan Kitagama Yonahara Masamori

Source: 58takashi (Instagram)

The vessel is characterized by its beautiful Persian blue glaze, which seems to reflect the color of the Okinawa sea.

At first glance, the bright blue color seems to be for advanced users, but if you add browns such as baked goods, the contrast will be clear and it will look very delicious.

Yomitan Kitagama Masaaki Miyagi

Source: 58_kitagama (Instagram)

Many of Masaaki Miyagi's works have Yachimun-like motifs, giving them a natural yet powerful feel.

It has a particularly good reputation for being easy to use, and it is easy to see when it is displayed on the table.

Who is interested in Yachimun?

I think this is because the power of Okinawa's nature and the cheerfulness and brightness of Okinawan people reside in the pottery.

I feel that Yachimun has a charm that makes people's hearts energized.
When you go to Okinawa, please take a look at the various Yachimun.

Also, this article introduces Yachimun's recommendations in detail.

・24 stylish table coordination examples of “Yachimun”

・Dynamic 12 selections of Yachimun mugs that will give you a sense of charm feel! Yachimun's 10 makai (rice bowls)

In addition, based on the concept of ``Enjoy pottery fairs while staying at home,'' our store has been collecting ``This person!'' from pottery fairs and craft fairs all over the country. This is a shop that handles and sells pottery made by artists who have thought of this.

We deal with various artists all over Okinawa, and we also sell the artists introduced here. If you are interested, please take a look at the link below.

Yachimun list page

Thank you for reading until the end. I hope you all find good works!

Enjoy pottery market at home Uchiru