Signed Japanese vintage Kyoto Pottery or Kyo-yaki bowl was made about 30 years ago by Master Potter by Heian Kakuho. This is a very fine pottery bowl made in an unusual manner, with a very different creative design most likely requiring the same in technique. Open work of branches, leaves, and flower buds are carved out and connect together to form a wide outer border. Although not an exact arabesque design, it is created much like one but in open work and made with the leaves and flower buds. The open work used in the bowl design is called 'eiji' in the reticulated style or 'sukashi' simply meaning open work in Japanese. Bowls similar to this called keko usually in gold metals were used in Buddism in the 12th -14th centuries to hold flower petals for ceremonies. The center design that creates a shape like a cross appears to be made of blooming iris formed on a tooled background. I am not sure if this is correct nor the name of the motif, but it is gorgeous together with the outer border, both of which are separated by a brown border that looks like it was formed by pressing small fingers very close together all the way around, with a similar outer rim border.
The artist quite effectively made the piece look almost like it was painted on handmade metal art. The bottom foot is built up with four pieces forming thick, flat circular layers getting smaller and smaller and stacked on top of teach other, with an open area for the inscribed mark. It is inscribed with the mark of and by the very skilled potter who made it, Heian Kakuho. Heian is the old name of Kyoto, and is now used by the Master potters in Kyoto to denote status along with the last part of their given name, for their potter's name. This is a gorgeous and high quality very unique piece. I will look for or try to get help or more information about Heian Kakuho, if that is even possible often it is not. It is in most excellent condition, no cracks, chips or other issues, the bottom is a photography issue I need to fix,
Size: Diameter 8.07 inches or 20.5 cm, Height 1.85 inches or 4.7 cm. Weight 570 grams or 1.25 lbs.
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Please excuse the length of the following but we believe it is important to understand the related background to truly appreciate your new Japanese pottery.
Kyōto-shi 京都市 and Kyo-yaki 京焼き
Kyoto most often called Kyōto-shi 京都市, is a city located in the central part of the island of Honshu, Japan. It has a population close to 1.5 million. Formerly the imperial capital of Japan for more than one thousand years, it is now the capital city of Kyoto Prefecture located in the Kansai region, as well as a major part of the Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe metropolitan area. Heian-kyō, the Heian Period capital of Japan that has become the present-day city of Kyoto. As a result the making of Kyoto Ware most often called Kyo-yaki 京焼き, has spread out from the center of Kyoto to regions around Kyoto. It's population is one of many generations of families of potters including many notable and famous potters.
Kyoto has a history of 1,200 years. Before the Muromachi era, potters, from China and Korea, developed their own techniques and affected Japanese potters. Later, some of them moved to Kyoto, the center of Japanese culture, and founded their original styles of Kyoto ware. That is why Kyoto Ware has a wide range of ceramics with the expression of regional characteristics, such as Seto, Mino, Shigaraki, Ko-kutani, and Ko-imari. By the end of the Edo era, because of the influence of the Chinese paintings, there were some predominant artists in the Nanga Style Paintings, such as Taiga and Gyokudo who played important roles in the emergence of two tastes in Kyoto and Kiyomizu Ware. One taste is overglaze enamels on potter. The other is porcelain added Chinese features by Eisen. There are many shaping techniques: hand shaping, potter’s wheel, plaster mold method of embossing, and fluid technique.
The city of beautiful artwork is of many generations of families of potters with the skill of the potter being handed down through each generation. It is said Kyoto Ware is deep, for it shows the mixture of the diversified ceramic essence. Needless to say, Kyoto Ware is the pride of Japanese tradition.
Most have now switched from traditional climbing kilns for the firing,to electricity or gas. As a result and due to the many various glazing techniques brought to use by the newer generations of potters over the last 60 years or so, a new style of Kyoto Ware has emerged. Some of the most modern looks, new skills, and well-known potters art are currently known for their Kyo-Ware or Kyo-yaki for pieces during the second half of the 20th century for more modern pieces.
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