Yamanaka & Company, New York to 1896 
From 1896 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from Yamanaka & Company in 1896 
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 
 See Original Pottery List, L. 481, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.
 See note 1.
 The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.
- Previous Owner(s)
Yamanaka and Co. (C.L. Freer source)
Charles Lang Freer 1854 - 1919
Gold lacquer repair.
Clay: hard, fine. Stoneware.
Glaze: cream, finely crackled.
Decoration: white slip with iron and impure cobalt under glaze. Pavilion and landscape.
The poem reads: "In tranquility, the universe is great." The conflation of a vast entity with a small bounded space is a common theme in Zen poetry, and ultimately derives from the early and influential Daoist test Zhuangzi (ca. 3d century B.C.E.) A ceramic prototype with this expression can be seen in kosometsuke, the late-Ming cobalt-decorated porcelains imported into Japan in the early-Edo period. Here, since half the poem is on the outside and half on the inside, the full measure of the verse--and its relation to the enclosed space of the vessel, which "becomes" the universe in metaphor--is revealed either through drinking or otherwise handling the bowl. Serious poetic appreciation thus merges into mischievous "parlor" humor, with parallels in painted sake cups that reveal comical faces or other figures as they are tipped.
- Published References
- Richard L. Wilson. The Potter's Brush: The Kenzan Style in Japanese Ceramics. Exh. cat. Washington. p. 65, fig. 4.
- Beatrice Hohenegger. Liquid Jade: The Story of Tea from East to West., 1st ed. New York. p. 274.
- Collection Area(s)
- Japanese Art
- Web Resources
- Google Cultural Institute
- Rights Statement
Copyright with museum