Recent finds.

It has been raining here for about a week. Pouring, day and night.
I went to an auction I attend monthly in Nara and here are the things I picked up.

First a few notes on the auction.

The market has completely crashed for middle quality Imari. The market for high middle and the lower end of the high market is looking sick too. The very top, Nabeshima, shoki Imari, etc. is holding it’s own.

I am very interested in sobachoko. I have been reading a couple of books I bought recently on  them and I am itching to try out my new found knowledge. I won’t be doing any of that until I scrape enough money to buy some since sobachoko are the one item that has consistently held ground on price. Expensive.

I could have picked up a matching set of 2 bowls done in celedon with underglaze work. They were very beautiful and delicate. I didn’t simply because they were outside of my very narrow price range but after I thought about it I think I really missed an opportunity. I do end up selling most of what I buy so I can’t afford to have a large amount tied up in my own “collection” but they were very beautiful.

There were a couple of items I wanted to bid on but left before they came up. One was a Bizen tokkuri that had a kamajirushi in an unlikely spot. I saw a few people looking at the bottom of the piece trying to figure out if what looked like a mark was in fact a mark. I walked over and did the same, deciding it wasn’t a mark. As I was putting the piece back into the basket I noticed a distinct and identifiable mark on the side that I am sure most people missed. The tokkuri was at least 300-400 years old so I might have gotten a deal if the mark wasn’t noticed by anyone else. The other piece I wanted to bid on was a shoki Imari plate. Very simple underglaze gosu design. One of the most simple designs I have seen. I forgot both of them and only remembered them as we were heading home.

The first is a piece of wood from I don’t know what. It has old and rusted nails holding it together. Very beautiful and delicate.
The second piece is a celadon glazed plate with extensive underglaze work in gosu or cobalt. Gosu is Japan’s natural cobalt. At some point the plate was repaired with gold fill. I really like pieces with this type of repair and I think this plate looks fantastic with it.
The next piece is a printed plate with a brown edge.
The next plate is interesting in that it has a variety of different motifs.
The next plate is a typical piece decorated with cobalt. The color is much more intense than gosu.
Mountain Fuji plate is next and in the plates the last one is a stork and pine tree theme.
I also bought a tea ceremony furo and kama.
Lastly are 3 candelabra. The smallest is very nice. It looks like it belongs in a temple. The second one is very Japanese and the last one is more western.

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