Bizen pottery, along with the pottery of the Seto, Tokoname, Tanba, Echizen and Shigaraki
regions is one of the six potteries of the Middle Ages. It is one of the oldest schools of pottery in Japan, tracing its roots back to the "Sueki" found in ancient burial mounds. It underwent numerous modifications from the Heian era up to the beginning of the Kamakura era to make it more durable. This lead to the creation of a superior pottery for daily use and resulted ultimately in today's Bizen pottery, with its unglazed, natural beauty.
It was this same unglazed, natural beauty that, during the Muromati era, brought about the admiration of many tea masters, with their preference for austere refinement, and resulted in the creation of many renowned tea utensils.
During the Edo era, under the patronage of IKEDA Mitsumasa, the head of the Bizen clan, Bizen pottery became renowned throughout the entire nation. From that time on, Bizen pottery's place in history was assured. The roof tiles of the Shizutani School, which IKEDA Mitsumasa created for the purpose of educating common people, were made of Bizen pottery, and the lecture hall has been designated a national landmark.
For more than one thousand years,the tradition of Bizen pottery has continued uninterrupted,as has the smoke from the kilns. And now, the simple warmth of the earth, and the artfulness of handmade ceramics provide so many people with something that they cannot find in our modern society, and admirers of Bizen pottery can be found all around the world.