Japanese Antique Black Kuro-Oribe Chawan | Clog-Shape Tea Bowl | Signed Makuzu Kozan, maker | Meiji Period

This is a sophisticated katsu, (clog-shaped), Black Kuro-Oribe winter tea bowl, is decorated with a glossy and tasteful black glaze, and iron-glazed abstract textile motif in a simple composition, inscribed, “congratulation, felicitations”, with impressed seals by the maker, Makuzu Kozan, (1842-1916). This Chawan is characterized by unconstrained application of its shape, and stylized decoration. A general feature demonstrated in this piece is the craftsman’s deliberate deformation of the rim and overall three-dimensional shape. It contains a wonderful indentation in the front of the bowl. Note that the refined decoration, which is divided into two windows has a creamy-white glaze, in which a brown ornamentation has been integrated showing influence from textile patterns of the period. This also provides a look at the contrast between unglazed and glazed surfaces. The piece has a short Nakamura Rokuro kodai, (foot), thus giving stability to the piece, and the opportunity to see the superb quality of clay. This Chawan is beautifully made and heirloom quality.  Age: Meiji.  Dimensions: 5-1/8” dia. x 2-1/2”h.

Additional Information—

Oribe ware is a type of Japanese pottery most identifiable for its use of green copper glaze, matte black, and boldly painted graphic, textile-like motifs. It was the first use of colored stoneware glaze by Japanese potters. It takes its name from tea master Furuta Oribe, (1544-1615), and was considered an innovative style at the time. It is said that the unique and individual forms were made under Oribe’s direction. He was a pupil of Sen no Rikyu, Japan’s most famous Tea Ceremony artist. In the present day, Oribe ware is very popular with Japanese antique collectors for its historical significance, and unique shapes. Wabi means accepting imperfection, and many of these bowls adhere to this beautiful Japanese philosophy.

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