Hizen ware bottle in tea-whisk form

Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1650-1670
Porcelain with enamels over colorless glaze
Arita ware, early enamel type
H x W: 25.1 x 15 cm (9 7/8 x 5 7/8 in)
Japan, Saga prefecture, Arita
Credit Line
Gift of Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Ceramic, Vessel


Arita ware, early enamel type, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, pine tree, porcelain, tea, WWII-era provenance

From at least 1967 to 1970
Eugene Meyer (1875-1959) and Agnes E. Meyer (1887-1970), Washington, DC and Mt. Kisco, NY, from at least 1967 [1]

From 1970
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer on June 21, 1971 [2]


[1] The vase was examined and stored for Agnes E. Meyer at the Freer Gallery in 1967, see W. T. Chase’s note, dated June 1967, in object file.

[2] Agnes E. Meyer expressed a wish of donating the vase to the Freer Gallery in a letter to John A. Pope, dated January 28, 1969. The vase was acquired from Agnes E. Meyer Estate, see Deed of Gift, dated May 31, 1971, copy in object file, where the object is listed as no. 4.

Previous Owner(s)

Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer (1875-1959) and (1887-1970)


Japanese porcelains with overglaze enamels of this type, derived from Chinese decorated porcelain of the first half of the seventeenth century, formerly were thought to have been made at the Kutani kilns in Ishikawa prefecture. Archaeological research has now demonstrated that they were made at the Arita kilns in Saga prefecture, the former Hizen province. This style of decoration represents the earliest phase of enamel decoration on Japanese porcelain. The principle motif on this bottle is the "three friends of winter—pine, plum, and bamboo."

Published References
  • Oriental Ceramics: The World's Great Collections. 12 vols., Tokyo. vol. 10, pl. 69.
  • Thomas Lawton. Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Memorial Exhibition. Exh. cat. Washington, 1971. cat. 31, pp. 74-75.
  • Julia Murray. A Decade of Discovery: Selected Acquisitions 1970-1980. Exh. cat. Washington, 1979. cat. 73, p. 94.
Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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