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Dai-style pottery: Pottery with belief

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Dai-style pottery: Pottery with belief



Edited by Yu Xuebin


Dai-style pottery has always had two functions, either as utilitarian household vessels or religious ritual props. For the latter, Dai people have decorated the roofs and ridges of Buddhist monasteries with different types of pottery, showing their worship to nature and deities. Dai-style pottery, modeled after plants and animals, are used to decorate religious architectures. These pottery articles reflect people’s reverence and pious wishes, and are regarded with divinity. Closely linked to daily lives and religious beliefs of the Dai people, Dai pottery is one of the few pottery styles worldwide that can be called “pottery with belief”. 

The functionality of Dai-style pottery has significantly improved over the thousands of years of its evolution and development. Today, Dai-style pottery mainly include lamps, tea sets, fragrance diffusers, vases, and characteristic tableware. They have become increasingly practical and gained wide popularity in the whole society.

Xishuangbanna Taixiang Pottery Studio is a Dai-style pottery making workshop dedicated to popularizing Dai-style pottery craftsmanship and culture, with emphasis on the spiritual inheritance of the Dai people. In Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, Taixiang Pottery, whose works are elegant in shape and full of unique traditional cultural symbols, has become a synonym for Dai-style pottery. Adhering to their tradition of “obtaining materials from local sources”, Taixiang Pottery uses pure, natural clay obtained from local deposit, to make its pottery, and is especially renowned for its tea sets. When a tea set is shaped, the clay body is fired at 1,000 to 1,200℃ temperature for oxidation reduction reaction, which enables the finished tea wares to contain over a dozen minerals beneficial to health, such as iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, and strontium.






Plain tea set



This tea set, decorated with patterns based on the holy trees and flowers of Therevada Buddhism, has been fired with a unique high-temperature restoration technology. Its scientific design and breathability render it ideal for brewing Pu’er tea. It inherits the pragmatic philosophy of the Dai people, perfectly combining practicability with traditional aesthetics.

Market Price: RMB 1,200 per set


Wood ash-glazed juice cup



Using a wood ash glaze preparation technique dating back to the ancient Shang Dynasty(1600BC—1046BC), this unique attractive glazed clay juice cup is widely favored and are used for containing tropical fruit juices.

Market Price: RMB 260 per piece  


Lotus patterned tea caddy



This tea caddy, ideal for storage of Pu’er tea, is made of local clay fired at 1,200℃ with unique high-temperature oxidation reduction technology. It bears a decorative lotus pattern of Therevada Buddhism in Xishuangbanna Prefecture, and is hand-carved by master sculptors.

Market Price: RMB 1,280 per piece


Incense burner



This incense burner, modeled after the Buddhist pagodas commonly found in Dai-inhabited areas, is elegant in shape and highly effective in fragrance diffusion.

Market Price: RMB 260 per piece


Fine tea set



This tea set, decorated with images of tropical rain forest species, featuring high breathability, and distinctive form and design, can be used for both storage of loose tea leaves and brewing of Pu’er tea.

Market Price: RMB 2,200 per set


Characteristic pottery lamp



This distinctive courtyard lamp, hollowed out with plant totems unique to Xishuangbanna region, adds romance to cozy courtyards.

Market Price: RMB 660 per piece  



Address  3-1701 Ganbai Street, Gaozhuang Xishuangjing, Jinghong City, Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture

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