Before I post today's spoils, I thought I'd share with you some photos of my ceramics collection. I collect blue and white pottery, for a start..I use quite a lot of it for serving food, but other pieces not. The pieces I have are mostly from Japan, China or Vietnam but I'm not particularly precious about locale or vintage..one of these plates is from an American homewares chain I happened to pass by in San Francisco (the upside down plate on the very left with a big blue octopus on it!).
I have lots of pieces scattered throughout the house, but here are some main pieces:
A couple of these are particularly precious to me. This is my mother's Chinese government-issued yoghurt pot. Among the first Western expats to enter post-Mao Zedong Beijing in the late 70s (my brother, who's a US citizen, had a clearance letter signed by Henry Kissinger!), my parents no doubt had circumstances a lot more fortunate than many around them, but still had to line up every day for basic food rations at the state-run commissaries for the first few years. This pot, not very big at all, represented the daily yoghurt allowance for a family of 3.
And this 1920s ginger jar, which belonged to my grandmother. A woman ahead of her time in many ways, she loved Chinese art and culture and had quite a few Chinese antiques, though she'd never been to Asia - not till visiting us in Hong Kong in the early 80s after I was born. Anyway, I love this because it reminds me of her and how unconventional she was for her place and time:
This is a little bowl I came across in a Kyoto shop. I had gotten talking to the owner in my OK but patchy Japanese and after an hour or so of nattering away, I bought a few things and he insisted on giving me this pretty little bowl as a gift. It's cracked and dirty but I get the feeling it's quite old, or at least has had a lot of use in its lifetime:
Obviously, I don't use any of these three things for food, as they all have decades of dust and grime that no amount of cleaning can seem to get off. One day I'll look into getting them professionally cleaned perhaps.
Other things in the top photo; a Japanese platter from the early 1800s, china chopstick rests from the Tokyo Edo Museum, a plate with painted vegetables on it from a department store in Kyoto, and the big thing at the back right is a hibachi. Porcelain ones like this are actually not really used for cooking, but for heating. I have, however, filled it with coals, laid a mesh on top and used it for grilling, being a total heathen.
I also collect ceramics from a lovely Australian potter called Bison
. Based in Canberra, they make beautifully smooth and tactile pieces that are always cool and comforting to touch, but best of all, can be microwaved, frozen, used in the oven and dishwashed. They makes lots and lots of colours, but I'm partial to the blues, particularly the duck egg blues.
Anyway, wanted to show a little bit of my non-food kitchen items.
Edited by rarerollingobject, 30 July 2011 - 07:53 PM.