The Boston Museum of Fine Arts had an extensive show of Samurai armer, helmets, and weapons this summer. On the surface that may not seem to have much to do with Raku pottery, but they both have deep connections with Zen Buddhism and the Tea Ceremony. Samurai's warrior code and the Tea Ceremony's Raku bowls both grew out of Zen Buddhism. In medieval Japan militarism, aesthetics, and religion all mingled together. The masks and helmets are amazingly bizarre and imaginative. Many are so complex and impractical they must have been for ceremonies and not for warfare. Earlier in the term Jinny suggested creating 3 small masks. What better inspiration than the Samurai.
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