Ewer

Ewer (suichu or mizutsugi) (^j^)

Cylindrical neck with constricted throat; body with swelling shoulders and tapered base on spreading foot. Single handle attached to neck and mid-body, ending in curl; central groove along length of handle; hole pierced in handle near neck. Upright spout swollen at base and everted at rim.

Clay: porcelain; white, translucent, with some small inclusions.

Glaze: transparent with slight bluish cast, deeper blue and bubbled where thicker around spout and handle.

Decoration: in underglaze cobalt of varying tonalities. Around cylindrical neck, narrow band of vinescroll above broader band containing chrysanthemum blossoms with leaves, in profile. Solid blue band around constricted throat. On shoulder below neck, band of zigzags above band of “herringbone” leaflike motif. On handle, simple “fishbone” pattern. On spout, banana leaves rising from base to midpoint of spout. Major design on body is pastiche of landscape motifs: cliffs with vines and vegetation; banana plant, rocks, and stream; Chinese balloon flower plant (kikkyo); palm tree. Tapered base repeats band of leaflike motif found on shoulder. Solid blue band around narrowest diameter of base. Band of zigzag motif on spreading foot. Executed in line and wash, the wash applied with a stiff blunt brush and not well controlled.

Mark: not marked.

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Historical period(s)
Edo period, 1660-1680
Medium
Porcelain with cobalt pigment under clear glaze
Style
Arita ware
Dimensions
H x W x D: 20.1 x 15.3 x 10 cm (7 15/16 x 6 x 3 15/16 in)
Geography
Japan, Saga prefecture, Arita, Probably Chokichidani kiln
Credit Line
Gift of Mason W. Wang
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1986.10
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceramic, Vessel
Type

Ewer

Keywords
Arita ware, chrysanthemum, cobalt pigment, Edo period (1615 - 1868), flower, Japan, landscape, porcelain, river, tree
Provenance
Provenance research underway.
Description

Ewer (suichu or mizutsugi) (^j^)

Cylindrical neck with constricted throat; body with swelling shoulders and tapered base on spreading foot. Single handle attached to neck and mid-body, ending in curl; central groove along length of handle; hole pierced in handle near neck. Upright spout swollen at base and everted at rim.

Clay: porcelain; white, translucent, with some small inclusions.

Glaze: transparent with slight bluish cast, deeper blue and bubbled where thicker around spout and handle.

Decoration: in underglaze cobalt of varying tonalities. Around cylindrical neck, narrow band of vinescroll above broader band containing chrysanthemum blossoms with leaves, in profile. Solid blue band around constricted throat. On shoulder below neck, band of zigzags above band of "herringbone" leaflike motif. On handle, simple "fishbone" pattern. On spout, banana leaves rising from base to midpoint of spout. Major design on body is pastiche of landscape motifs: cliffs with vines and vegetation; banana plant, rocks, and stream; Chinese balloon flower plant (kikkyo); palm tree. Tapered base repeats band of leaflike motif found on shoulder. Solid blue band around narrowest diameter of base. Band of zigzag motif on spreading foot. Executed in line and wash, the wash applied with a stiff blunt brush and not well controlled.

Mark: not marked.

Label

Fragments of ewers of this type were recovered during the recent excavation of the Chokichidani kiln site in Arita. The date of 1666 appears on the Dutch silver mounting of another such ewer, indicating that the shape was among the earliest made specifically to order for the Dutch East India Company.

Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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