The Chinese tea art was entirely formed at the beginning of Edo ancient period (the first half of the 17-th century). Edo epoch is suggested to be the time of the developed Middle Ages, for which, the hard society structure and class hierarchy were typical. The new tendency - to design tablewares appeared and then became very popular at that period of time.
The production of a Chinese ceramic designer was considered to be the most valuable all over the World and was called as "ceramono". There is no surprise here. It should be remembered, that tea was brought to Japan from the Great Chinese Empire and the tea-drinking rituals were a daily practice in monasteries. As to Japanese tea culture's development, first of all, it was also connected with the wide spreading of Buddhism religion.
Since the 14-th century, ceramic jugs, intended for drinking green tea, were very expensive in Japan. That type of ceramics was produced in 12-13 centuries. In Japan, masters tried to do the copies, however the quality of the local clay continued to leave much to be desired.
That's why since the moment of appearance of ceramono goods in Japan, at once they became a rarity and the fact of possessing such goods was equal to the high social status.
All ceramona works were catalogued and each of them had the special list which included all its previous owners. For instance, the first tea-caddy, which was called as "First Flower", had about 12 owners.
The most valuable ceramona goods were also: cups and vases, which were being produced in China during 12-14 centuries.
If to speak about ceramono's appearance it should be pointed out, that all goods had absolutely correct form - all of them were symmetrical and had no defects.
At the end of the 16-th century a new style of the tea culture appeared and the founder of which was regarded to be a quite famous ceramic designer - Sen No Rique. The main his idea was the following - he wanted to return the culture to its simplicity and naivety. In fact, he refused to use the expensive ceramono goods and took a decision to include the available cheap goods of urban and peasant life.
So that, the ceramic designer began to use the simple soup saucers as tea cups and applied the ceramics which came from Korea. Later, those goods took the second place among the other objects of tea hierarchy. He also proved it wasn't necessary to produce a tea spoon from ivory and the vases for flowers - from bronze. He cut out both a spoon and vase just from bamboo. As to a tea-caddy it was simply replaced by a black lacquered box.
Sen No Rique is a unique ceramic designer because he managed to create his own style of ceramics. One day he asked some Korean craftsman, who produced colour tile, to produce a tea cup from the same material. Especial quality of clay and glaze allowed them to create a wonderful thing - soft for lips, light and which could keep heat for a long time. That thing managed to take the first place in the hierarchy of tea cups in the end.
In addition, it should be pointed out, that the Sen No Rique's ideas, concerning aesthetic values, led to the outstanding burst of Japanese ceramic production in the 17-th century.