The Kura - Japanese Art Treasures

Robert Mangold has been working with Japanese antiques since 1995 with an emphasis on ceramics, Paintings, Armour and Buddhist furniture.
In accordance with the requests of local authorities our Kyoto gallery will be closed to visitors from April 14th until further notice.

Rare Rokubei IV & Shunko & Suzuki Shonen Chawan

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Stoneware: Pre 1900: Item # 1452501

Please refer to our stock # TCR8237 when inquiring.
The Kura
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817-2 Kannonji Monzen-cho
Kamigyo-ku Kyoto 602-8385
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This is a very interesting look at the liberal advancement of the Rokubei Kiln in the 19th century. A wide chawan tea bowl hand formed by Shunko (Haruka) decorated with a blossoming plum by Suzuki Shonen enclosed in a custom wooden box titled Umenoga chawan (tea bowl with plum). It bears the impressed seal Shunko inside the foot-ring. Stylistically these are very much in keeping with the works of Otagaki Rengetsu, many of which were also fired at the Rokubei Kiln under the watch of the fourth generation. It is likely that the women at the kiln would have gotten along well with each other, and possibly even worked side by side. That said I have found no records of the names of the female members of the Rokubei household. The bowl is 16 cm (6-1/4 inches) diameter. There are some stress cracks from the rim about the plum branch, either a very tight repair or simply cracked but not broken. The box inscription reads:
Handmade by Mother (unreadable) Female Shunko (alternate reading Haruka)
Decorated by the Old Friend Shonen
Fired by Father 4th Generation Shorin (Shorin was an alternate name used by Rokubei IV)
Annotated by the 5th Generation Rokubei followed by two stamps
Kiyomizu Rokubei IV (1848-1920) was born the first son of Rokubei III and headed the family kiln from 1883-1913.He studied painting in the Shijo manner under Shiiokawa Bunrin and had a brotherly relationship with his fellow student Kono Bairei (under whom his own son would study painting). He sought to revitalize the pottery tradition of Kyoto, bringing in new techniques and styles and together with artists like Asai Chu and Nakazawa Iwata took part in the Entoen group and with Kamizaka Sekka the Keitobi-kai. He also held a strong relationship with literati artists such as Tomioka Tessai and together with these artists produced many joint works. He fell ill in 1902, finally handing the reins over to the 5th generation in 1913.
Suzuki Shonen (1849-1918) studied under his father Suzuki Hyakunen and served as a professor at the Kyoto Municipal School of Painting. Born in Kyoto, he lived through the tumultuous early years of change in the Meiji era, when Japan was opened to outside influence for the first time in 3 centuries. Reflecting the times, he established his own unique style of painting which blended aspects of Nanga and the Shijo School, with influences from Otsu-e and Western Perspective. Much lauded in his lifetime, he was awarded a silver medal at the Paris World Exhibition in 1900. He is well known as the teacher of Uemura Shoen, one of the most important artists of the era. Works by this artist are held in the collection of the Victoria Albert Museum, British Museum, Ashmolean, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Seattle Art Museum among many many other important private and public collections.