Autumn would be the best season to visit Yixing 宜興, the town in the Lake Tai (Taihu) 太湖area in Jiangxu province 江蘇省. In the world of Chinese art, Yixing is most famous for its zisha 紫砂 (purple clay) teapots, which have been in production catering to and appreciated by literati and art collectors ever since the late Ming dynasty till nowadays, all through 500 years.
The Yixing teapot masters and their masterpiece teapots, of the past and in the modern, would be the main contents of this Yixing trip. Apart from visits to museums for teapots in the past, we will meet contemporary masters at their studios and stroll through markets for teapots of the modern. We will also enjoy tea in the bamboo grove, imitating and imagining the literati in the past – both tea and bamboo grove, though a bit less famous than teapots, enjoy great fame in Yixing. Moreover, Yixing in Autumn will bestow us not only the good weather, but also the fresh and delicious mitten crabs – what a treat!
Lai Suk Yee
Ms. Lai Suk Yee has been doing research on Yixing teapots 宜興茶壺 and the related art and culture for over 20 years. She has participated in organizing three major exhibitions, publishing books and writing articles on Yixing teapots at the Art Museum, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, while she was working there as assistant curator and then researcher. Suk Yee retired in August 2015, yet she continues on her research work on Yixing teapots. She is now appointed a Researcher of the Research Institute of Ceramics (Zisha) Culture at Yixing, a Researcher of The Hong Kong Ceramics Research Society in Hong Kong, and also a Museum Expert Adviser of the Leisure Cultural Services Department of Hong Kong Government.