Japanese Vintage Pottery Ikebana Container

Japanese Vintage Stoneware Ikebana Container | Karatsu Ware | Impressed Mark


Age:1912 (Late Edo period)

Descriptive qualities& condition:

Dimensions: 7-1/8 h x 7-14” Dia

This handsome Ikebana container has a brown wrinkled and irregular stoneware body with a neck that is formed and shaped by hand, with beautifully proportioned ears. The body has a transparent glaze, allowing one to experience the texture on all sides of the piece. It has mustard green coloration and surfacing of iron elements in the clay created during firing which adds further interest to the overall piece. There is incising throughout the surface of the clay of an undetermined design, emphasizing the sensual and tactile aspects inherent in the piece. On the front portion of the neck, and flowing over one shoulder, is a thick splash of a translucent glaze in white, green, and brown pigments, creating a contrasting, and vitrified, glass-like surface. An impressed seal mark in the shape of a double gourd is on the bottom edge. Our understanding is that the piece is Karatsu ware, based on the style of pottery, and the impressed stamp by the maker.

Vintage Condition: The pottery vase is in excellent condition and as originally made. No cracks or dings, and “as is” retaining the original craft/workmanship. Any discoloration, chipping/cracking, surface wear, or structural damage noted. ATTENTION: Because of the historic value and delicateness of this piece, we suggest you consider priority shipping and insurance from the delivery agent.  The dimensional shipping weight that we standardly use from USPS would not be sufficient. You can contact us to get a quote before purchase.

NOTE: Karatsu ware is made in the town of the same name within the Saga prefecture. Karatsu is well known for its under-glazed iron pottery, which is strongly influenced by Korean craftsmen. The majority of Karatsu ware has been made in Anagama, (wood-fired), kilns.

Japanese ceramic ware of Korean origin was produced in Japan’s southern island of Kyushu. The actual date of production is thought to be sometime during the first half of the 16th century, in the late Muromachi period. The development of Karatsu ware was fostered by the adoption of entirely new techniques brought from Korea after two invasions of that country carried out during the closing years of the 16th century. With Korean potters being brought to southern Japan as a result of the occupations, the earliest Karatsu ceramics show strong influences of Korean style and workmanship. Behind much of this development lay the popularity of the tea ceremony and Ikebana flower arranging, which was sweeping Japan at the time. The Korean-style Kyushu wares were felt to be quite appropriate to the wabi-cha approach to the formal tea ceremony.