Small porcelain Japanese Imari teacups with minute, intricate, colorful paintings of a shi shi and landscapes.
Small cylindrically-shaped cups of thinly potted porcelain with alternating panels of landscapes and a shi shi. There are cobalt bands above the foot rings and a cobalt ring at the mouth. At the mouth is a gilt band. The paintings are so tiny someone must have gone blind painting them.
The cups were first painted with a nice dark smoky cobalt blue underglaze and then fired. The designs were then painted with green, gray, iron red, and gold over glaze enamels. Black was used to accent and outline. After the enamels were painted, the teacups were fired for a second time. The glazes feel smooth, slick, thick and look shiny. The colors are bright and colorful. Hand work in the potting and painting were also expertly done. You can see the potter’s wheel marks under the base glaze and slight differences in the paintings. The cups have thin raised unglazed foot rings that feel very smooth. The clay is very refined. The bases are glazed.
The cups have no maker’s marks or labels.
Each cup measures 2 ¼” (5.7 cm) tall x 2 1/8” (5.4 cm) diameter.
Total weight 6.2 oz ( 175 g)
There are no chips, cracks, or breaks. There is gilding loss at the mouth rim. The glazes are bright and shiny. There are small kiln flaws such as black spots, pimples, and one cobalt explosion near the border above the base on one cup.
A rich, delicate, intricate pair of matched teacups to add color and richness to your décor. They will add to your Imari collection.