The first piece I saw was a Shigaraki bowl with a bad repair job. It is actually a regular bowl that the tea people made into a mizusashi.
The next is a handled plate fired Bizen that I have photographed before. I took the opportunity to photograph the whole set of kamajirushi including the one that is in the bottom of the plate. I have labeled the different periods in the title of the pictures. If you click a picture and read the title it will tell you what period the shirushi are from. It should be noted the shirushi were for identifying work from workshops in the huge kilns and were not signed with an eye toward 500 or so years later and someone trying to read them. That is to say the images in the book I took the photos out of won’t match up perfectly with any one actual piece’s shirushi.
The next piece is a lacquered box, a piece of Japanese made tsuishu. Compare the detail on this Japanese made tsuishu with the Chinese made tsuishu I wrote about here. No comparison. The piece today is from one of the top dealers in Nara, not Mr. Kawase. It features a matsu, pine, take, bamboo and ume, plum motif. This is a strong indication it is newer. Older pieces will only have 2 of the 3 motif elements. The word for this type of 3 plant motif is shochikubai. Sho = matsu = pine, chiku = take = bamboo and bai = ume = plum. This is an interesting point. My children know this already but I think it would take a fair amount of studying to come across this commonly understood way of saying ‘a motif that contains pine, bamboo, and plum’ for a non-native speaker of Japanese.
The last piece is a kind of throw away. I really like the detail and that is why I photographed it. It is a handmade basket maybe from the turn of the century. It is colored from smoke. The material is bamboo.
I have so many pictures I am not going to try to organize them. If you click on the photo there is a title that will explain what it is.