One is a craft that dates back thousands of years, and has been practiced by people around the globe. The other is a social media platform that kicked off in 2010. But in the case of potter Haruya Abe, Instagram and ceramics go together in perfect harmony.

Abe is a Japanese pottery master in the town of Ueda in Nagano Prefecture, but his photos and videos have earned him followers from around the world, who are drawn to seeing his finished pieces, as well as the oddly satisfying clips of him shaping bowls, plates, and other vessels on the wheel and then carving patterns into their surfaces.

As explained at My Modern Met, Abe frequently uses a Japanese pottery technique called yokoku, which involves scraping patterns into pieces before they’ve been fired in a kiln. There’s something hypnotizing about the way that he shaves away the clay, leaving behind these intricate designs. The effect is even more impressive when Abe shapes a piece on the wheel as you can see in the video above, where he uses specialized utensils to pare a vessel to the perfect shape.

Japanese Pottery Comes to Instagram

The potter didn’t initially intend to become an Internet celebrity. His first Instagram posts were just the result of him playing around with his wife’s mobile phone, but with more than 100,000 followers on the social media service, we have to say that he’s probably one of the most popular ceramicists on Instagram. Here are just a few of his clips and pictures:


・ Bowl. ・ しのぎ亀甲鉢 ・ #うつわ#器#しのぎ#阿部春弥 #pottery #ceramics #porcelain #tableware #handcraft

A post shared by Haruya Abe 阿部春弥 (@abe_haruya) on

Abe’s pieces are reasonably priced, and can be found on the Japanese pottery e-commerce site, Hanada. You can follow his Instagram feed here.