Pater Gratia Oriental Art

Sold Ceramics

 

Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800

 

Dishes

 

Page 1

When internal wars began to impede the production of, and consequently the trade in, Chinese porcelain toward the end of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), several Dutch Merchants began to buy porcelain in Japan. At the same time, the production of faience pottery in Delft was stimulated, in order to compensate the shortage of Chinese porcelain. From 1658 onward, the Dutch East India Company, (Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie, VOC) also recognized these commercial opportunities and began to order greater quantities of porcelain from Japan. In addition to a very diverse assortment of blue-and-white porcelain. largely in the style of traditional Chinese export goods, the coloured Japanese porcelain formed an unexpected new article in the Netherlands. It soon became very fashionable and the Company was able to generate a great deal of profit in this field.

 

One potter who benefited greatly from the new Dutch orders was Sakaida Kakiemon, who owned a porcelain kiln near Nangawara, just outside Arita. His porcelains characterized by a lucid whit composition and texture with decorations in various tints of enamel including orange-red, grass-green and blue.

 

By the second half of the 17th century, this porcelain had already seen the rise of a serious rival, the so-called Imari porcelain, named after the port in Kyushu from which it was shipped. This Imari was cheaper, and had vibrant, full decoration in cobalt blue, orange-red and gold, occasionally with extra details in green enamel, aubergine or black. It was manufactured specifically for export and harmonized perfectly with the baroque taste of the buyers in the Netherlands. It became so popular that the Chinese also began to produce it from the 18th century onward.

2011490 and 2011491
2011490 and 2011491

Sold Ceramics - Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Object 2011490 and 2011491

 

Two dishes

 

Japan                                     

 

1670-1690

 

2011491: height 50 mm (1.97 inch), diameter 330 mm (12.99 inch), diameter of footring 170 mm (6.69 inch), weight 1.205 grams (42.51 ounce (oz.))

2011490: height 50 mm (1.97 inch), diameter 337 mm (12.99 inch), diameter of footring 165 mm (6.69 inch), weight 1.018 grams (35.91 ounce (oz.))

  

Two dishes on footrings, flat rims. On the base of dish 2011490 four spur-marks and on the base of dish 2011491 five spur-marks in a X-pattern. Both decorated in underglaze blue and enamels with in the centre a flowerpot surrounded by a band of a continuous branch of prunus blossoms. The sides and rims are divided into kraak-style panels, the large panels filled with flowering plants, the narrow ones with geometric patterns. The reverses have a continuous flower scroll in red, green and yellow. On the base of dish 2011490 an old rectangular paper label that reads: 'Papa = acheté la paire à Bruxelles en 1957 à 2.500 F. (en face de Lips)' which translates as 'Dad bought the pair in 1957 for 2.500 F. (across from Lips)'

 

Jörg describes an identical dish in his Fine & Curious. Japanese Export Porcelain in Dutch Collections. This rare dish can be considered an interesting intermediate piece. It combines the underglaze blue kraak-style (fuyō-de) with early Imari enamelling. (Arts 1983, p.48 plate 19a), (Jörg 2003/1, p.94, cat. 87 & p.291

 

For an example of an early, underglaze blue, Japanese kraak dish, dated 1660-1680, please see: Ayers, Impey & Mallet 1990, p.93 cat. 31. 

  

Dish 2011490 shows a finely crackled greyish glaze that can be compared with that of a group of dishes in early Kakiemon style of the same period as this dish. This demonstrates a typical feature of Japanese porcelain, where the glaze is often but not always crackled. Dish 2011491, which originally formed a pair with dish 2011490 (see the rectangular paper label on the base) does not have the crackled glaze, which underlines that both was possible with Japanese porcelain and both were considered of equal quality. (Jörg 2003/1, pp.75-76, cat. 62 & 63)

 

The colour scheme of the scrolls on the reverses and the ‘light’ way of painting the leaves and flowers is still reminiscent of the early enamelled pieces. At the same time, the dense design, combination of underglaze blue with enamels and the bands in the centres already shows the early stages of the mature Imari style, which developed somewhere between 1670-1690. This was in all likelyhood stimulated by the orders from the Dutch who liked the bright colours, strong designs and complex compositions. (Jörg 2003/1, p.91)

 

Another hybrid style dish which offers an interesting comparison can be found in the collection of the Royal Trust (inv. nr. RCIN 58828). The underglaze blue kraak design still clearly prevails here. The enamels show an opaque, strong green and dark brick-red, which resembles the early enamels colour scheme more closely. Therefore, this piece can probably be dated slightly earlier than our dish(es).

 

Finally, this unusual Imari design can also be found on a finely painted copy, possibly of 19th or 20th century Japanese origin, featuring the same diameter, please see: Windsor House Antiques (Ref No. 6522). The dish also has spur-marks and an unidentified (pseudo?) mark on the back. The high quality of this dish is striking. Perhaps it was made to replace an original Japanese dish as part of a larger set?

 

windsor housewindsor house rev

Windsor House Antiques (Ref No. 6522), this dish is not included in this sale/offer. 

 

Condition: 

2011490: Fine crackled glaze and a hairline to the rim. 

2011491: A chip to the rim. 

 

References:

Arts 1983, plate 19a

Ayers, Impey & Mallet 1990, cat. 31

Jörg 2003/1, cat. 62, 63 & 87, p.91 & p.291

www.royalcollection.org.uk/, inv. nr. RCIN 58828

www.windsorhouseantiques.co.uk/, Ref No. 6522

 

Price:

2011490: Sold.

2011491: Sold.

 

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2011625
2011625

Sold Ceramics - Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Object 2011625

 

Dish

 

Japan

 

1710-1720

 

Height 51 mm (2.01 inch), diameter 367 mm (14.45 inch), diameter of footring 188 mm (7.40 inch), weight 1,739 grams (61.34 ounce (oz.))

 

Dish on footring, flat rim. On the glazed base six spur-marks. Imari, decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red and gold. In the centre within a band of flower heads and scrolls a flowering peony spray. This is surrounded by six wide lotus-leaf-shaped panels filled with flowering plants and insects On the rim, in between the panels, a flowering chrysanthemum between scrolls. The reverse with chrysanthemum, poppy and prunus sprays. Fitted in a brass frame.

 

On Japanese ceramics butterflies (Jap.: chõ-chõ; Chin.:hu-tieh) are most frequently pictured in combination with the peony. This composition is of Chinese origin. It not only includes the combination of richness (peony) with happiness (butterfly) but also a rebus. Written with a different ideograph, tieh also means 'double'. The addition of a butterfly to an emblem of good fortune indicates its double effectiveness. (Arts 1983, p.124)

 

Condition: Some wear to the decoration. 

 

Reference:

Arts 1983, p.124

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2011889
2011889

Sold Ceramics - Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Object 2011889

 

Dish

 

Japan

 

1700-1720

 

Height 41 mm (1.61 inch), diameter of rim 245 mm (9.65 inch), diameter of footring 132 mm (5.02 inch), weight 582 grams (20.53 ounce (oz.))

 

Dish on footring, straight rim and slightly upturned edge. On the base four spur-marks in a Y-pattern. Imari, decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red and gold with a stylized 16-petal chrysanthemum crest, (kiku no mon). The petals are decorated in gold and iron-red and gold reserved on an underglaze blue ground. Those in gold reserved on an underglaze blue ground show ether a lozenge diaper pattern (tasuki) or floral scrolls. Those in red and gold show designs of a flowering chrysanthemum. On the sides two groups of flowering plants, chrysanthemum alternating with peony both growing from rockwork. On the rim flowerheads between scrolls in gold on an underglaze blue ground. The reverse with chrysanthemum, peony and prunus sprays.

 

Although some types of chrysanthemum begin flowering in the summer, the chrysanthemum is primarily an indication of autumn. Like many autumn motifs the chrysanthemum evokes feelings of melancholy in Japan, as is beautifully expressed in a poem by the 9th-century Ki no Tomonori:

 

tsuyu nagara / to wear in my hair

arite kazasamu / I plucked a chrysanthemum

kiku no hana / with dew still clinging to it

aisenu aki no / oh may this present

hisashikarubeku / autumn's youth last forever

  

2011889

 

Despite the chrysanthemum's status as a symbol of the Japanese imperial house, this meaning is only relevant when a 'sixteen'-fold double chrysanthemum', the stylized family crest (mon), is placed prominently and singly on an object.


(source: Fitski 2011, p.149

 

For an identically decorated dish, please see:

For dishes with a similarly large central chrysanthemum crest, (kiku no mon), please see:

For a dish with a similarly large central chrysanthemum crest, (kiku no mon), formerly part of the Dresden collection formed by Friedrich August or August the Strong, Elector of Saxony and King of Poland please see:

Condition: A hairline and a popped bubble of glaze (caused during the firing process) to the rim.

 

References:

Kassel 1990, cat. 286

London 1997, cat. 119

Suchomel 1997, cat. 104, 156 & 197

Düsseldorf 2000, cat. 58

Impey 2002, cat. 354

Jörg 2003/1, cat. 126, 247 & 247a

Kyushu 2003, cat. 2789.

Fitski 2011, p.149

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2010372
2010372

Sold Ceramics - Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Object 2010372

 

Dish

 

Japan

 

1700-1720

 

Height 33 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of rim 255 mm (8.86 inch), diameter of footring 132 mm (5.20 inch)

 

Exhibited: The Asian Galleries Reinmagined - Color Across Asia held from 21 December 2016 to 13 May 2018 at the Ackland Art Museum, The University of North Carolina at Chaphil Hill, The United States of America, Object Guide no. 5.

 

Dish on footring, flat rim. On the base four spur-marks in an Y-pattern. Imari, decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red and gold with man fishing on a riverbank near a pagoda, trees and two sailing boats, on the left a waterfall with bamboo trees both originating from rockwork, On the horizon a mountain landscape with pagodas trees, clouds and the sun. On the sides and rim rocks from which flowering peony and chrysanthemum plants grow from behind brushwood fences. On the reverse a continuous wide spread flowering prunus scroll.  

 

Condition : Perfect.

 

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2011565 & 2011566
2011565 & 2011566

Sold Ceramics - Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Objects 2011565 & 2011566

 

Pair of dishes


Japan

1680-1700

 

2011565: Height 33 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of rim 212 mm (8.35 inch), diameter of footring 111 mm (4.37 inch), weight 351 grams (12.38 ounce (oz.))

2011566: Height 33 mm (1.30 inch), diameter of rim 213 mm (8.39 inch), diameter of footring 114 mm (4.49 inch), weight 401 grams (14.15 ounce (oz.))


Two dishes on footrings,  slightly everted rims. Imari, decorated in underglaze blue, overglaze iron-red and gold with flowering peony and chrysanthemum plants growing from behind a fence and a single butterfly in flight. On the reverse three flowering prunus sprays. Crackled glaze on both dishes.

 

The crackled glaze is caused by the unequal contraction of the body and the glaze during cooling in the kiln after firing. (Jörg & Van Campen 1997, p.235)

 

This specific design was (later) also used in China, for an example of a similarly, in Chinese Imari decorated dish, please see:

Condition: 

2011565: A firing tension hairline and a fleabite to the rim. 

2011566: Three firing tension hairlines and two unglazed firing flaw spots. 

 

Reference:

Jörg & Van Campen 1997, cat. 267

 

Price: Sold.

 

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2012013
2012013

Sold Ceramics / Sold Japanese Imari 1690-1800 - Dishes - Page 1

 

Object 2012013

 

Dish

 

Japan

 

1730-1750

 

Height 50 mm (1.97 inch), diameter 244 mm (9.61 inch), diameter of footring 133 mm (5.24 inch), weight 705 grams (24.87 ounce (oz.))

 

Dish on footring with a spreading flat scalloped rim and eight recesses to the edge. On the base six spur-marks. Imari, decorated in underglaze blue, iron-red and gold with a crane in flight just above a pine tree and various plants growing near a shore with a tortoise rising up from out of the water. On the rim a butterfly alternating with flower sprays. On the reverse three flower sprays.

 

On Japanese ceramics the tortoise is often depicted in combination with the crane (Q.V.), the design known as tsuru to kame. This combination is emblematic of good fortune and happiness. It refers to a famous legend in which two lovers eventually changed into a crane and tortoise and journeyed together to the realm of the Immortals. The tortoise shell motif is one of the oldest decorative motifs in Japanese art.  (Arts 1983, p.118

 

The crane (tsuru), the tortoise (minogame), the pine tree (matsu) and the butterfly (chõ-chõ) are all symbols of longevity.

 

Ten different forms of tortoise are said to exist, the chief of all being the divine tortoise (shin kame), conceived by thought and attaining an age of thousand years or more. At the age of 500 years certain plants would grow upon its shell, which, streaming backwards as it swims about, would give it the well-known appearance of a long-haired tortoise, also known as the 'raincoat' tortoise (minogame), because its resemblance to a peasant's straw raincoat. The Japanese say that the tortoise has inscribed on his back the roku-jõ (six cardinal virtues) namely: chi (wisdom), (friendship), gi (fidelity), jin (charity), shin (sincerity) and kan (contemplation), an old idea borrowed from the Chinese.  (Arts 1983, p.117

  

The shape of this dish is that of a snow flake roundel, (yukiwa-gate). A European influence could very well be possible as the border is not dissimilar to that of Monteith bowls. These dishes come in various sizes and were produced for export most likely by the Higuchi kiln and the Hokaoyama kiln. Usually the Higuchi kiln examples tend to be of poorer quality porcelain than the Hokaoyama examples, but the pattern seems closer to those from the Higuchi kiln. (I am indebted to Mr. T. Coram for this information)

 

For an identically shaped and decorated (larger 280 mm (11.02 inch)) dish, please see;

One occasionally finds bowls with this form, for an example, please see:

Condition: Some wear to the green enamel.

 

References:

Arts 1983, pp.117-118

Kyushu, 1995, cat. 188.

Tokyo 2009, cat. 147

 

Price: Sold.

 

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More pictures of object 2012026, another identically, shaped, sized and decorated, sold dish >>