Bertil Persson (potter)

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Bertil Persson
Born Nils Bertil Persson
Malmö, Sweden
Nationality Swedish
Occupation potter

Bertil Persson (b. 1940) is a Swedish Hagi ware potter based in Japan.


Persson graduated from Skånska målarskolan in Malmö in 1958 and was employed by Royal Copenhagen in Denmark the same year, where he worked with painting sets of the company's Flora Danica porcelain dining set.[1][2][3]

After a company-sponsored trip to various locales in Japan to study Japanese pottery and porcelain in 1969, Persson decided to give up porcelain painting and become a potter. After the master of one of the kilns he had visited in Hagi reluctantly agreed to accept him as an apprentice, he moved to Hagi in 1970 and underwent a 7-year apprenticeship, before eventually setting up his own kiln named Nanmyōjigama (南明寺窯, lit. "kiln of the Nanmyō temple") in Hagi, Yamaguchi where he also lives.[4][5]

In the beginning, Persson made traditional Hagi ware as tradition dictated but he gradually began experimenting with painting his pottery and by time, this became his trademark. He has become especially known for his painted ceramic plates, which he himself refers to as "e-Hagi" (絵萩, "painted Hagi (ware)").[5][6]

In 2002, he was awarded a "Distinguished Cultural Services Award" (文化功労賞, bunka kōrōshō) by Hagi city.[2]

The Japan Times has described him as "one of the most popular artists of Hagi ware"[7] while the Yamaguchi Shimbun remarked he has many (domestic) admirers.[5]


  1. ^ "萩焼をキャンバスに描く風と草花の世界". Hagi-shi Kankou Kyoukai. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "作者の経歴". Nanmyoujigama. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  3. ^ "伝統の萩焼に花を添えた スウェーデンの陶芸家". europe (238): 19–20. 2004. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  4. ^ Japan Pictorial, Volume 17, 1994 (Japan Graphic)
  5. ^ a b c "「絵萩」の陶板など150点 ペアソンさん作陶展-山口". The Yamaguchi Shimbun. 24 October 2010. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  6. ^ "ペアソンさんの陶板のこと". Hagi no Shuku Tomoe. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  7. ^ "Swede brings two views to Hagi pottery". The Japan Times. 4 November 1997. Retrieved 24 October 2013. 

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