chrl42 wrote:

So she might cooperate with her sis.

I always thought that is possible because their styles are similar.

However you can tell if the item is definitely done by her - the quality is there - in terms of that indefinable look and style as well as the technical excellence. However her pots are quite expensive nowadays - can be more than US$1500 - compared to those days a few years back when US$300 can get a fairly good pot of hers.

I have not met her but i was told she is quite quick-tempered and assertive - these qualities are reflected in her teapots - strong, full of confidence and vigor.

chrl42 wrote:

My friend sells Wu Ju Fang's as well, she's pretty talented..from what I know she doesn't use Dai Gong (sub-potter)

Personally I'd prefer her over Ge Jun's, he doesn't make pot, he's a designer..his General teapot (60 signatures on it) is awesome tho..hehe

She has a sister Wu Ting Fang. I saw a number of her sister's works - those i saw has calligraphy at one side and pictures at the other. There is also a three-legged teapot with a dragon mouth. Sorry i don't have the pics.

Her own works have improved tremendously. The past works which I saw have water dripping from the spout. I saw a teapot where the cover is not well-fired - it has a ring like a water stain around it, near the edges. Her present works are very good indeed. Excellent i would say. The water does not drip at all and the water flow is strong and stable.

I am not familar with the other names you mentioned. However I will keep a look out for them. Thanks.

Charles,

I came across this shuiping teapot. It has small words 'zhong guo yi xing' perpendicular to the base of the handle.

There are no marks at the bottom.

There are no marks at the inside lid.

There is no filter in the inside of the teapot.

However right inside the teapot, on the floor, is an embossed picture of Chairman Mao.


May I know if you have come across such teapots yourself?

Thanks Charles, I learnt a lot from you

That's a good point. And that is why I felt that yours and William's initial reply that an inside track is important. The type of potters to collect will then depend on the inside track.

I don't think i will collect the Gao Jis pots - i couldn't afford them and also they have at least a few apprencetices in their studios.

I will stick to the Zhu Li's and Gong Shi's, especially those in the style i like. The dealers over in my country have brought in Wu Ju Fang's teapots. I like her creations. But for her teapots i do not need to go to yixing. I can go through my dealer here, whom i trust, to get the teapots from her and sell it to me at a reasonable profit to themselves. So far, their choices of her teapots are of excellent quality.

A fellow collector has a couple of Ge Jun's teapots. I thought they looked lovely. But Ge Jun does not live in Yixing.

Which potter do i collect? At this point in time, I have started on teapots collection for about two-three months. It is too early to localize. More important at this time to expand my knowledge and make relationships with potters. Do I need to move to China to do this? No, not really. Because knowing people whom the potters trust and working through them can produce the same benefits. But so long as a personal relationship is formed, over time, that potter may come to trust and like you and thus reserve her better pots for you. Sometimes it happen, sometimes it doesn't.

That is why rather than making the same mistakes for each of us, perhaps a group tour to yixing might be worthwhile. Sharing our experiences will add to collective knowledge and ensure a more shallow learning curve. Besides a regular group buying may have the same effect as selling to a regular dealer. In this case, the more obvious advantage is that the potter will have a wider clientele via word of mouth advertising. This will give her an added incentive to give you her better pots, especially if yours is a knowledgeable group.

Oh, I did not buy that Gu Jingzhou's pot. I learnt that it is better to let the more experienced buyers take that sort of risk. I admire such pots from afar :)

Thanks Charles for your comments.

Did I make any wrong comments or comments contrary to the spirit of Teadrunk.org? If so, I am sorry. To ensure that I do not do so again, can you please let me know?

Cheers

Charles, thanks for the picture.

I noticed a similar pot - supposed to be ben shan luni, same design, shows a greenish tinge, silky in look. However it has lots of black dots. Charles, is that because sand or some minerals are mixed with the ben shan luni?

I did not buy it because of two reasons: the cover shows an uneven symmetry and one portion of the body has a slight indentation in its curvature. I was told that this design requires very good technical skills to carry it off.

er Charles, William....you want to be the guide to yixing for teadrunk forummers?

10

(12 replies, posted in Chinese Teaware / 中国茶器)

The alternative is to buy from the dealers. However to do so, you need to be assured of the integrity of the dealers. Not all are honest. Conversely not all are dishonest. The difficulty is the level of recourse you have when you are given defective goods. Returning a defective good back to China is a nightmare, something that internet buyers are mostly ignorant of (except for those who had gone through that nightmare).

Having a middleman is introducing an additional layer of potential fraud - fakes and imitation. Again it depends on the level of trust. Hearing someone shouting at the top of his voice on the dishonesty of others does not make him an honest man. That comes after a period of personal interaction wherein the level of integrity will reveal itself. Frankly by that time, it may well be too late.

The firing process is quite complicated and often results in defective pots. These are often sold to the dealers at a steep discount. The problem is that some of these dealers pass it on to unsuspecting buyers as normal goods and earn a handsome profit. It may even be the case that the potters themselves pass a defective pot to the dealers as a normal pot.

For these reasons, if it is possible, perhaps buying direct from the potters may be a better alternative.

I understand that many of the potters are quite shrewd businessmen too. I was also told to be wary of potters whose wife, sons and daughters are potters themselves. However in yixing, that is quite common.

As William said, the inside line to them is perhaps the key. That will increase the probability that they give a better quality product to you.

Another alternative is to wait for exhibitions. However such exhibitions are often held by junior potters who produces certificates of high attainments. The really good ones have their ready-made clientele and lots of back orders. The trick then is to view the outputs of these junior potters with an expert eye to their future attainments. That is beyond my ability at this moment.

But William and Charles, I understand your reservations - at least, i think i do - to a certain extent. Thanks for your cautious words. I too, do not wish to meet with dishonesty in any form. I am willing to pay for good products, to be fair to the potter. Again as you said, in the midst of strangers, an inside line is invaluable.

I want to visit Yixing and buy directly from the potters.

I understand that they may or may not give to us dealers' price but at least there is no question about the pots being genuine.

Can anyone give to us (I am organizing a group event) some tips please?

Charles,

I know that you have posted at length on ben shan luni and duanni and i have read your postings. Thank you.

If ben shan duanni is positioned as ben shan luni, then how can we tell that a teapot is made of ben shan luni? From what i see, duanni has a more opaque feel whist luni has a more translucent feel to it. In addition, luni has a glow to it that duanni does not. Is this correct?

isaac wrote:

Thanks Charles. Luckily i am guided to be wiser before putting any money down.

Not wise enough

Thanks Charles. Your website is really useful.

There have been many assertions and i believed in all of them when i started out. Now having bought many pots from gao ji potters who are not even listed in the yixing list, lost US$750 in trusting an online vendor, i became wiser.

chrl42 wrote:

Hua Jian Min 華建民 is Gong Yi Mei Shu Yuan (5th level)

Charles, i cannot find Hua Jian Min or Dai Lin Lin names listed in www.yxzst.com

Where can i find his grading please?

Thanks

Thanks Charles. Luckily i am guided to be wiser before putting any money down.

chrl42 wrote:

from experience, benshan is usually good for any type of tea.

Charles, i noticed that if you use tieguanyin on duanni, it turns a darker shade of yellow. Will ben shan do the same too? For example, if you brew pu-erh, tieguanyin or white tea in ben shan luni, will it turn dark, moderately dark or remain light over the years of use?

Charles, if a teapot is made of ben shan luni but the cover is not well-fitted (meaning the craftsmanship is not that good), should i still buy it for the clay?

Thank you.

18

(2 replies, posted in Chinese Teaware / 中国茶器)

I asked a question on authenticity in an earlier thread and i think it is a reasonable assumption that it is very difficult to prove once and for all the authenticity of a teapot.

Pardon me, but is the teapot maker Mr Hua Jian Min a famous potter? If so, you might like to google and compare the craftsmanship online and in other shops. It might give you a better basis to make a judgment.

Did you buy them online or through ebay? No offence intended to any businessmen here, i do think you need to get from trusted dealers. I came across this website deeho and they have some wonderful teapots. If you have any experience with them, do share as i intend to get one from them in the near future.

Some of the bigger teapot sellers may bring in yixing artists on a regular basis. If so, you might like to buy their works. At least you will be assured that these were indeed made by the potter. This appears to be a safer bet than online purchases as you also get to test out the teapots. I doubt that there is any warranty once the teapot passes into your hands.

Thanks again William for your reply.

Porcelain or plain glass was also suggested by the books i read if I want to brew green tea. I will probably get a japanese porcelain for this as they looked absolutely gorgeous (though I doubt the quality of the tea will be affected).

The vendor told me that the green teapot is suitable for pu-erh. Once i find the cable, i will download pictures of my teapot into the appropriate thread for comments.

One tea enthusiast shared with me that the small lao zhuni should be used to brew wuyi tea and use the green teapot for tie kuan yin. Then use a porcelain pot for longqing. Pu-erh will need a bigger yixing pot than what i currently have. Do let me know if i have errors in my understanding. I value your opinions.

Thanks for your reply William.

I too felt that certificates are a dime a dozen. I have not reached the stage where i trust the vendor simply because i saw them classify a big teapot as lao zhuni and i read that lao zhuni are rarely found in big teapots. Businessmen are businessmen. However a part of me just wanted to believe.

There are a few possibilities: it is indeed genuine; it carries a genuine stamp but the teapot was made by his apprentice; it is a fake. I guess i will take my time to learn (after all, i started on this a few weeks back) and also to improve on my mandarin and read the texts. Better that than to be made a fool.

Hi,

I am new here and i sincerely hope that i am not offending any etiquette by adding to this post. If i do, please let me know. I am also interested in matching green tea to teapots. Like the threadstarter, I am interested in longjing as well as jasmine tea.

I own a green yixing teapot that is speckled with sand. At the moment, all i am sure of is that i can brew oolong tea with it. But can i use it to brew longjing tea? Or even pu-erh?

Thank you.

Hi Charles,

Thanks for the article.

I came across a Gu JingZhou on sale for US$35,000. The question at the tip of my mind is how on earth would i know if it is genuine. There is no fake pot for comparison :) as they told me that all their products are genuine.

I did ask the question on how did they know it was genuine. They told me that their owner knows the man and used to visit China often. That is why he has a lot of his products.

Btw, he also have a lot of Jiang Rong and other Masters for sale. Again my only question is, how will i know if they are real? Is there a certification body? Or is it based on trust and reputation?

Thank you once again.