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Japanese Inaba cloisonne (cloisonné) teapot
Everything about this teapot is absolutely wonderful – from the square shape, to the panels featuring dragons and ho-ho birds, to the bits of glitter embedded into the enamel. It all comes together to create a feast for the senses.
Made by the Inaba company in the early 1900s, this piece exhibits the fine craftsmanship that this company was known for. The primary background colors are black and a pale olive green. Two shield-shaped medallions decorate each of the four sides; one is brown with a green dragon, and one is green with a multi-colored ho-ho bird. The medallion borders are shaped like bamboo. The top of the pot includes two medallions; one features a bird with outstretched wings and the other a butterfly. The wire used is very fine; the patterns are delicate and detailed.
The base is enameled black and has a cloisonné design; the Inaba mark is in the middle. It includes four brass feet and a brass finial on the lid. A carrying handle is attached to the top. The inside of lid and pot are enameled black.
SIZE: Height to the top of the handle is about 5 1/4". The pot itself is 4 1/2" by 4 1/2", while the spout adds another 1 1/4" to the front.
CONDITION: Condition is very good to excellent. We see two enamel cracks on the section in the back where the handle is connected. There are two small enamel chips on the top two corners of the spout. And there is the typical enamel pitting here and there.
This truly is a beautiful example of excellent cloisonné artistry and craftsmanship. It will grace any collection!