Japanese Ceramics with Masakazu Kusakabe course



  • Capacity

    7 - 12 People

  • Schedule

    10h00 -13h00

    15h00 - 18h30

  • Price


  • Dificulty

    For beginners with experience, advanced and professional

  • Additional info

    We offer shared accommodation, subject to availability

Japanese Ceramics with Masakazu Kusakabe course

This is a magic week to immerse in ceramics and Japanese culture and to work and learn with Sensei Masakazu Kusakabe.

Getting to know the history of Japanese ceramics, the ash glazes, making tea bowls on the potter’s wheel or small sculptures from clay and deliver them to the power of the wood fire.

Yes, in this master course you have the opportunity to fire your art pieces in our SASUKENEI- SMOKELESS KILN! Designed by Masakazu Kusakabe and built in Cerdeira in 2015.

Beside his deep knowledge of ceramics and wood firing, Japanese ceramist Masakazu Kusakabe is a true master in every sense. His workshops are not limited to pottery, but also include other elements of Japanese culture, including tea ceremonies, sushi making, the “Wabi Sabi” philosophy, and music. In short, workshops with Masakazu Kusakabe are full days, complete with hard work, learning and exchange, that bring out the best of each one of us, as an artist and a human being. And believe when we say hard work!


  • History of Japanese ceramics

  • Working on the potters wheel

  • Clay sculptures

  • Tea bowls

  • Firing the SASUKENEI-SMOKELESS KILN (2 times)

Peter Layton

Masakazu Kusakabe Potter and Kiln Builder

The master dominates the fire and the art of wood firing like no one else due to almost 50 years of wood firing experience. Although in each firing he’s still looking for new challenges!

Born in Miharu/Japan in 1946 where he still lives and works, his curriculum is filled with international exhibitions and with the construction of the smokeless ceramic kiln, designed by him, all over the world!

In 2005, he published the book “Secrets of Japanese Ceramic Wood Fire” in collaboration with the ceramist Marc Lancet.

Sensei Masakazu Kusakabe's website


This is how Masakazu Kusakabe describes his work:

I always consider Japanese traditional culture when I do my work. The history of ceramics, the flow of change, and local specialities are also very important.

I use five principles when I work:

  1. Having a “Friendly and Lovely” shape, welcoming shape and texture, when we look and touch. Accepting it like our beautiful body. Comfortable to touch or handle and its weight.

  2. The shape of “Powerful and Wild Feelings”. The Kamakura era, Momoyama era and the Samurai spirits produce designs that are sharp, succinct and are powerful to touch, like a tool or a saber.

  3. The materials of the earth, “Nature, Land, Mountains, and Rocks”, the feeling of time in nature through rocks, crystals and jewels.

  4. The shape of “Historical feelings or ancestry” to sense the memories and the goodness of an old shape through the piece.

  5. The feeling of a “Romantic and Fantastic” space, to feel the prose or poetry through the piece and observe the mysterious colours, shapes and materials.

For me the kiln is a part of the universe. Inside is the big bang where bright firelight, galaxies, and stars (my pieces) are born.

Firing is like the explosion of a volcano, and my pieces are like its lava rock. Pottery is like alchemy, we can create many jewels with clay, flames, and ash. I am the servant of a fire god.


  • Schedule 10:00 -13h ; 15:00 - 18.30 - except during firings when it's mandatory to make 4 hour shifts;

  • Offer of accommodation in our shared Residency house with enrolment in the course (subject to availability) or a 10% discount in accommodation with a minimum of 2 nights;

  • 10% early bird discount if you sign up before April 6th;

  • 3% discount for prompt payment granted;

  • Group meals can also be ordered.