This Japanese rare vintage porcelain brush washer of is made in the style of Nabeshima in the motif of a cheerful, colorful foo dog. In my opinion, it is an early 20th century vintage Nabeshima style brush washer of a foo dog. This was a purchase from an antique dealer in the U.S. and originally came from an estate sale. Owning a copy of a Japanese print book on Nabeshima history with many pictures printed in 1985, when I saw this piece. it seemed to be made in this same style While it does not have some of the elegant handwork of the earlier pieces, it is a wonderful piece, very colorful, well done and made with great skill; handmade and hand painted in overglaze enamels.
The foo dog has a great expression, with great details of its paws. The head is blue, with red and white waves of hair surrounding the side and back; colorful flowers outline the front. The colors are still very vibrant. IMO it dates from the late Meiji to early Showa period between 1912 and 1950's. It was the opinion of the dealer that it was early 20th c as well. Please compare to the picture of the Nabeshima foo dog okimono on the cover of the book we have from Japan, you will see the similarities in style and color. Since all the writing is in Japanese I cannot tell you what it says on this or the other similar pieces in that book. This is an absolutely lovely piece. Great condition, no cracks or chips. Some age spots or flea bites size on the bottom but minimal. Perhaps some age wear to the surface from handling. It is not marked, and may lend to it being older than I realize being in just very well kept condition. One might also notice that the paint and colors are exactly the same as a vintage Nabeshima vase recently posted, so it may be a little newer. This is a rare and great find.
SIZE: Length 4 1/4" or 10.79 cm, Height 3 1/2" or 7.62 cm. Weight 11.4 ounces or 323.18 grams
See our other Water droppers, Brush Washers and other Calligraphy items most are under Writing Category in both Vintage Collectibles and Antiques, or, just search on 'calligraphy' in the top center search bard inside our store!
History of Nabeshima 鍋島
Nabeshima ware continues to be made to this day and is usually grouped under Arita. There are different kilns that make Nabeshima. Historically most of Nabeshima porcelain made between the Enpou era of 1673-1681 and around 1750 have been colored with four colors; red, blue, green, yellow, and the designs were adopted from plants or patterns on kimonos. The elaborated, striking, and original expressions found on these wares make it seem impossible that they were made three hundred years ago. They possess a beauty which can be shared today.
Nabeshima is a supreme porcelain ware manufactured at Nabeshima feudal kiln, the Saga prefecture of today, under strict supervision during the Edo period. It is considered that the birth of Nabeshima porcelain had aimed to stabilize the relationship with the Tokugawa shogun family and other influences by presenting them as homage instead of popular and valuable Chinese porcelain.
From the mid 17th century onward many of these opulent and often highly ornamental pieces were shipped abroad from the port of Imari, resulting in all pieces crafted in and around the area i.e. Arita and Nabeshima being grouped together under the Imari label. Therefore, the Japanese as well as Europeans, called them Imari.
Coming to you from Austin, Texas, please visit our online family store of near 700 Japanese antique, vintage and contemporary items with a few pieces from other Asian countries. We carry over 100 Japanese makers of Porcelain and Pottery including those by famous potters and National Living treasures, well-known styles and kilns; and of all types and functions including vases, plates, koro and kogo and other tea ceremony items, art pottery and other decoratives, including vases and okimono, in an attempt to share the various arts of Japan as we learn them. Please email us through the store if you have any questions as it pages Sharon’s phone. Please see our homepage for more information about our family, the store, and ongoing important announcements. If you subscribe to our store, you will receive updates for new or changed items in our inventory and other important announcements at a frequency of your choice. and this is our only online location at this time.
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