Sohae Teapot

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In a backyard studio in Toongabbie, Western Sydney, a pair of sinewy hands shape clay spun on an old potter's wheel. These hands belong to a man that has done this thousands of times over the course of some 50 years - 50 hard years. You see, the artist known as Sohae (real name Kim Jae Gon) has seen his fair share of triumphs and troubles and so now every piece cannot help but bear his han.

His career started off with a bang. After working as a teacher he pursued his passion for pottery and quickly gained esteem for his work. In 1982 he published Korea's first pottery-making guide and by the mid 80s, his work publicised mainly through well-attended exhibitions was highly regarded by the opulent southeast Asian bourgeoisie. He moved to the Philippines, established a factory and produced lines of wares sold through department stores. After about five years of success in the archipelago, on a chance introduction by a friend, he fell in love with Australia and decided to take a chance here. He married his long time collaborator, artist Sojung who helped him with the more intricate carvings and painting and together with his two kids, migrated to Australia. 

But before Sohae could take-off Downunder, tragedy struck and Mr. Kim would lose his wife to illness. Grief-stricken, the pottery business was put on hiatus for several years. As Mr. Kim regained strength, the eldest son stepped in to help with operations but not long after, he too would lose his life. 

A longer break ensued and gradually over the recent two decades, Mr. Kim works at his own pace, fulfilling orders mainly for Korean fermenting pots, candle wares and various ad-hoc requests. 

We were fortunate enough to be accepted for one such request. Mr. Kim's daughter Gina who now does his deliveries and social media is a personal friend. I had been looking to produce our own teapot - one shaped similarly to our beloved Fang Gu but could hold 300ml and a wide strainer like our popular cast iron teapot

What resulted is a thing of rare, eclectic beauty. Running your fingers on the surfaces, you can feel the expert hands that made them. No, not every teapot is identical, these are not made from machine moulds, they are not mass produced. These are individually crafted by hand using experience, patience and heart. Each one bears the Sohae soul.

Key features:

  • Individually hand-crafted in Australia by Sohae
  • A blend of 80% Korean and 20% porcelain clay
  • Ceramic glaze, ceramic firing
  • Non-drip spout
  • Deep lid-well to allow near-vertical pouring
  • Can be used with or without accompanying strainer


  • Weight: 500g
  • Capacity: 300ml
  • Width: 18.5cm fullest extent from tip of spout to end of handle
  • Diameter: 11.5cm (not incl. spout or handle)
  • Height: 11cm including lid holding tip