Chorus of Life: Promoting purple clay teapot craftsmanship today
By Wu Lei
Across the world, people prepare and drink tea in many different ways. The signature handmade purple clay teapot is one of the most popular items among tea lovers in Asia. But the craftsmanship of making that teapot faces a rigid challenge in modern era. This episode of "Chorus of Life" presents the delicate craft with an old and a young master.
Tea sets have been a key part of Chinese dietary culture. But this craftsmanship is at risk of disappearing.
Over 90-year-old Gao Dezhi has been making purple clay teapots since he was 13. This kind of skill is usually passed down the generations or taught to those who are passionate about the craft. But Gao said it is now very difficult to find such people. In order to promote and protect skills at risk of disappearing, local governments have built a special museum where masters can showcase their craftsmanship.
Meanwhile in Yixing, Jiangsu Province, the birthplace of purple clay teapots, 29-year-old Wu Zhiqiang has lured many fans to his store via the internet. Here they learn how to make purple clay teapots. Many younger masters use the internet to promote their craft. They said the key is to arouse young people's interests in the art in modern and customized ways.