A very select group of 21 Western potters (16 from the USA, 2 Australian, 1 French, 1 German and 1 Dutch) assembled in Shanghai to be transported (as guests of 'factory no. 5') to Dingshu, Yixing.

Yixing is seen as the 'birthplace' of the teapot. (click here for a bit of the history+ influence on Europe)

the date: November 20, 1996

The event was historical! 
Western potters were invited to work together with local potters in Yixing, China.

 

Pic left:
Wellcoming party: lots of speeches...

.

The first day was filled with demo's. We were often surprized by the techniques we saw. 
Some were so simple, that we were surprized that we had never seen them before, or had thought of them ourselves.(This part of China had been closed to Westerners for quite some time).
Then we were invited to work ourselves.
In a big cold concrete hall there were small tables, the special tools and the famous Yixing clay...
We were allowed to choose a 'teacher' who would help us to master the special Yixing techniques.

The reception was great and no effort was too big to let us see all, taste all and experience all...

see below the shortened movie (only the work on Jeroen's tpots)

13:17 minutes

see below Jeroen's complete movie as shot in 1996

45:00 minutes

links that may interest you:

history of these teapots --- more on the symposium --- the clay --- my personal collection --- yixing teapots for sale