Dish, from a set of ten with original box

The dish was thrown on a potter’s kickwheel and then shaped over a bisque-fired clay mold. The footrim was then trimmed. The molded ten-lobed rim is edged with iron brown and coated with green (celadon) glaze, while the interior is painted in cobalt pigment with a design of iris blooming by a stream, under a colorless transparent glaze.

Overglaze enamels are used to outline the iris and wave pattern with gold and to render an auspicious design around the celadon rim of the crane and hairy-tailed tortoise (paired symbols of longevity) and pine and bamboo.

Historical period(s)
Edo period, ca. 1740-1750
Medium
Porcelain with cobalt pigment under clear glaze, enamels over celadon glaze
Style
Arita ware
Dimensions
H x W x D: 3.1 x 22.5 x 22.5 cm (1 1/4 x 8 7/8 x 8 7/8 in)
Geography
Japan, Saga prefecture, Arita, Higuchi or Kakiemon kiln, Nangawara
Credit Line
Gift of anonymous friends of Harold P. Stern
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1993.19.3
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceramic, Vessel
Type

Dish

Keywords
Arita ware, bamboo, cobalt pigment, crane, Edo period (1615 - 1868), enamel, iris, Japan, porcelain, river, tortoise, water, WWII-era provenance
Provenance

From 1950s – 1993
Private collection, purchased in Japan in the 1950s. [1]

From 1993
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of a private collector. [2]

Notes:

[1] According to the donor, object was purchased in Japan in the 1950s.

[2] See Freer Gallery of Art Purchase List after 1920 file, Collections Management Office.

Previous Owner(s)

Mr. and Mrs. Province Henry

Description

The dish was thrown on a potter's kickwheel and then shaped over a bisque-fired clay mold. The footrim was then trimmed. The molded ten-lobed rim is edged with iron brown and coated with green (celadon) glaze, while the interior is painted in cobalt pigment with a design of iris blooming by a stream, under a colorless transparent glaze.

Overglaze enamels are used to outline the iris and wave pattern with gold and to render an auspicious design around the celadon rim of the crane and hairy-tailed tortoise (paired symbols of longevity) and pine and bamboo.

Label

Wooden boxes were used to store ceramics and other precious objects. Inscriptions outside the boxes identified the contents. Often, additional inscriptions inside the box lid or on the base recorded the history of ownership or other details. This box is labeled to contain "a set of ten sashimi dishes" that belonged to the Kashiwaya, probably a fine restaurant or inn, as of 1755, when the box was inscribed and dated. The prized delicacy, known as sashimi-precisely cut raw filets of seasonal fish, with a dipping sauce-flourished chiefly as a specialty of professional chefs. The blue design of irises on these dishes, showing faintly through the thin slices of translucent fish, would have created a cooling visual effect especially appreciated in early summer.

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