The carving on the pot at one side means " Optimistic and full of spirit". The other side of the pot is a poem written by Chairman Mao Ze Dong during the Long March in 1935 and was set to an ancient melody.
This teapot was handmade by Li Changquan's studio 黎昌权. Mr. Li has over 50 years experience making Nixing Clay Teaware, having first learned the art when in his teens.
You can read more about Li Changquan and the history of the Li Brother's Studio in our blog entry here.
These are wheel thrown Nixing clay teapots. Each are handmade using Nixing Guangxi Clay. The teapot walls are thin-medium thickness. The clay has a mottled, dark grey to bronze brown color which varies between each pot and is a result of the clay's natural colors and the process of firing the clay.
About the Clay
Nixing Clay pottery is one of the 4 famous types of Chinese ceramics, which include Yixing Zisha. Nixing ceramics are made in Qinzhou, Guangxi. The art is quite old, having been practiced over 1000 years. The clay is found in the surrounding area of Qinzhou, is environmentally friendly, and is used without adding any glaze, paint or other chemicals, making it a safe and healthy clay for use in teaware. Nixing clay is prized for its ability to take on a patina with use, like yixing, and for its degree of porosity. The clay is less porous than zisha but more than porcelain, making it a good clay for use when brewing oolong (similar use to Zhuni Zisha).
You can read more about Nixing clay here.
Preparation Before Use
Nixing Teapots should be prepared before using the first time. This is called "opening the pot". It removes any remaining dust from the teapot.
We recommend rinsing the teapot under warm water two or three times, then filling the teapot with boiling water and emptying it out two to three times. After this the teapot is ready for use.