Raku is fast-fired, low temperature, decorative ware with a porous quality which explores a ceramic fault, creating its random crackle-glaze appearance. The word raku is a Japanese term for this special form of pot making, which roughly translated means contentment, enjoyment and pleasure.
This process differs from other firing methods because the pots are removed from the kiln at their maximum temperature. The technique involves pulling the red-hot pots from the kiln and placing them in sawdust, thereby crazing the glaze and carbonising the cracks. The crackle nature of the glaze is enhanced by the post firing smoking that embeds the carbon into the crackles of the glaze. Because it is low-fired (around 900°C), the work remains porous and its value therefore lies in its aesthetic beauty alone.