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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Arita Porcelain - 香蘭社 有田焼 染山水

Many porcelain items collectors will know that best Japanese porcelain wares are make in the town of Arita.

The origin of porcelain art in Japan is dominated by two legends.

First legent has it that a man Gorodayu Go Shonzui who learned the production processes of porcelain in China during the Cheng Tê period (1506-1521) visit Japan in1511. He started making porcelain near Arita on the island Kyushu with Chinese raw materials. Porcelain ascribed to the artist seems to be of Chinese origin.

The second legend talks about a certain Ri Sampei, a Korean potter brought to Japan by lord Nabeshima Naoshige during the Korean wars at the end of the 16th century. In 1616 he would have discovered porcelain clay or toseki (containing kaolin) at the foot of the Izumiyama mountain near the Nangawara and the tengudani valley. Ri Sampei died on 20 September 1655 (this has been confirmed in 1967 when they found his death certificate).

Porcelain made at that time is called Shoki Imari and covers the first half of the 17th century.

There are three basically styles : the Korean style, the Chinese Tianqi Style (sometimes referred to as ko sometsuke) and the Hiekoba style.

All are with underglaze blue painting. At that time, most items were made for the tea ceremony (chanoyu).
Do you know when the Japanese porcelain art started becoming popular outside Japan?

Arita - Part 2 香蘭社 有田焼 青華春蘭

Artia - Part 3 香蘭社 有田焼 古伊万里蘭菊

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