Conversations in Tea: The Modern Ritual Through Ippodo Artists
NEW YORK, NY – In between our first exhibition of the new year and participation in Asia Week NYC 2020, we present “Conversations in Tea: The Modern Ritual Through Ippodo Artists.” The traditional idea of the tea ceremony, the cultural and time-specific ideology behind it, needs to be challenged as it does not do justice the new way in which contemporary culture interacts with tea.
Contemporary tea culture is a derivative of traditional Asian tea ceremonies. Now, more than ever, buying and drinking tea is a routine part of one’s day. The beverage is consumed alone, while on the way home on the train, or while drafting emails at work. We each have our own, personal experiences with tea.
The time-honored philosophy of tea can be simplified into an act of meditation and appreciation. Today, the individual practice of tea consumption is a manifestation of idiosyncratic rituals. It is a private act that varies from person to person and is the definition of contemporary tea culture.
The complex, modern-day tea experience is woven together by the interplay of commodities in society. You can buy tea, from green to jasmine, at the grocery store in small bags, tin cans, and even in bottles. From browsing to ordering, tea consumption allows the consumer to participate in complex cultural conversations without being fully aware of it. The contemporary tea ceremony is a conversation of space, community, and meditation. It is about reflection and an inner dialogue that tea mediates. The more traditional movements of a tea ceremony have been replaced with interactions that constitute shared experiences which have become more personalized.
Ippodo Gallery’s philosophy embraces and parallels that of the tea ceremony. In this show, Ippodo showcases contemporary tea bowls, water jars, tea caddies, and lacquer trays to promote works that represent the highest quality of Japanese aesthetics and culture. Ippodo’s contemporary artists highlight the importance of tradition as well as its development over time. With this exhibition, Ippodo wants to remind the world of the philosophy of tea, the flow of culture, and the beauty of community.