David Watson Hood, visual artist
“Tables of Unspoken Dreams”
Inkstones, yàn tái, 砚台
Chief among all scholars objects is the inkstone, (simplified Chinese: 砚; traditional Chinese: 硯; pinyin: yàn) or (simplified Chinese: 砚台; traditional Chinese: 硯臺; pinyin: yàn tái) (Japanese: 硯 suzuri) (Korean: 벼루 byoru) a stone mortar for the grinding and containment of solid stick ink. It can be regarded not just as a tool but as an agent of meditation, and thus they can become secular relics of past owners, artists and poets as well.
As the best Chinese stones for producing inkstones are rare, expensive and in many cases even only allowed to be used for manufacture by licensed artisans within China, I have sought out local stones with similar properties to chinese rocks such as Duan or She stone. The extreme tilting of strata in this part of Scotland means that although it may all be vaguely referred to as slate, metamorphosed sedimentary rocks of very different nature occur in close association. This makes exciting finds possible, some with the inclusions and markings that are so sought after in the famous stones, but rarely in quantity. I have done a lot of fossicking in abandoned quarries and coastal exposure to find a few usable stones, with fine enough textures and appropriate porosity
Do you want to purchase an inkstone, seal, a painting, a print, or to commission or license a work etc. As most of what is shown here are either unique pieces or digital files. Prospective purchasers, publishers, commissioners or exhibitors should contact me in the first instance by e-mail. International or UK payment can be made through PayPal or BACS. Once your order is confirmed a PayPal invoice will be sent by e mail allowing you to pay securely by debit or credit card.