At the end of the 16th century, in Karatsu kilns, potters made tea bowls that were similar to the Korean style tea bowls. Today, these bowls are known as the Oku-Gorai style tea bowls. Although, the Oku-Gorai style is usually considered that as a follower of the Korean style. However, the differences in these two styles have not been cleared in earlier comparison studies. This paper explores the specific expression of the Oku-Gorai style in comparison with the Korean style, focusing on the glazing around feet of bowls. The research method is to analyze the bowl through the real object and images.
As a result, the Oku-Gorai style did follow in some parts of the Korean style, but it shows its creativity as Japanese tea bowls. The all Oku-Gorai style has an unlacquered surface, and its areas are larger than the Korean style. On the other hand, the Korean style depends on the shapes of bowls. Thus, the presence of a relatively larger unlacquered surface is the key characteristic of the Oku-Gorai style.