Echo is a Chinese cultural tea set inspired by the “World Tower”, otherwise known as the Dabao-en Temple of Buddhists in Nanjing. As a multifunctional product, it is a creative design that integrates today’s modern life with Chinese ancient architecture and culture.
Foryou Art Design Co., Ltd., China
Team Lead: Ma Cong
The inspiration for the Echo tea set came from the “World Tower”, otherwise known as the Dabao-en Temple of Buddhists in Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu province, China. The tower in this temple was entirely built with coloured glaze in the Ming dynasty and the top of the structure was decorated with gold, silver and jewellery. There are 152 wind-bells under its hips and the bell ringing can be heard from several miles away every day. This tower has been recognised as one of the seven wonders of the medieval world.
The Echo tea set consists of several pieces that are seamlessly integrated in a balanced, structured and pyramidal order. The base layer is a “containing plate” with a slot carved out in centre of the cover, which fits the holding tray for the teapot perfectly. The teapot and teacups are then set on top, each with its designated place. The octahedral shape of the pot lid is derived from the flying eaves of the pagoda, the pot body from its architecture and the cup from the shape of its wind-bell. Four teacups are placed around the pot, seemingly sitting still and chatting silently, waiting for the historical echoes.
The pot and four cups are made of porcelain with celadon-glazed and metal-glazed ornamentation, reflecting the beauty and charm of a glazed pagoda. The teapot tray is made of warm red sandalwood that feels smooth as silk – it can serve as a pot tray or an ink slab cover. The table is made of “She Ink Stone” from Anhui province and carved with auspicious swastika patterns. This is one of the four most popular types of ink stone in China. The opening in the middle can be used for tea washing, preparing ink with pine ash, or burning incense. The design perfectly integrates ink slab, tea pool and incense plate into one product.
Echo tea set does not only offer the core functions of modern tea ware but also integrates the culture of ancient Chinese architecture. It is a multifunctional product that embodies the charm and elegance of traditional art, made relevant for contemporary life. Behind this design is a passion for ancient art, a pursuit of elegance and a synthesis with modern life.