Vase

Baluster-shaped vase with fairly wide mouth, thin lip and slightly averted rim. Short neck and gently flared and tapered foot trimmed to create narrow footring.

Clay: Porcelain, footrim slightly chipped and darkened on surface by use.

Glaze: Dark blue glaze colored with iron, chromium and iron appears to be dusted on to exterior. Green splotches scattered throughout the glaze. Milky-white mottling on shoulder and area above base suggest that colorless glaze, applied over blue pigment, was probably under fired. Colorless glaze applied to interior and foot slightly under fired and obscures blue potter’s mark on foot. Unglazed footrim.

Decoration: Monochrome dark blue glazed bottle. The off-white of the interior contrasts with the dark blue of the body.

Signatures/Inscriptions: Two paper labels: “CMK 5” and “5/[square]/[2]” on foot. Potter’s mark: “Kozan sei” in blue (cobalt) on foot. Two additional, undecipherable marks on foot outside of square.

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Maker(s)
Artist: Miyagawa Kozan (1842-1916)
Historical period(s)
Meiji era, ca. 1893-1899
Medium
Porcelain with dark blue glaze
Dimensions
H x W x D: 16.5 x 11.1 x 11.1 cm (6 1/2 x 4 3/8 x 4 3/8 in)
Geography
Japan, Kanagawa prefecture, Yokohama
Credit Line
Bequest of Isabel S. Kurtz
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art Collection
Accession Number
F1991.28
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceramic, Vessel
Type

Vase

Keywords
Japan, Meiji era (1868 - 1912), porcelain
Provenance

To ?
Charles M. Kurtz (1855-1909). [1]

To 1991
Isabel S. Kurt (1901-1991). [2]

From 1991
Freer Gallery of Art, bequest of Isabel S. Kurtz (1901-1991). [3]

Notes:

[1] Ms. Isabel Kurtz bequeathed the group of Asian ceramics, F1991.19-.44, to the Freer Gallery of Art. These objects had been collected by her father, Charles M. Kurtz, who was a friend of Charles Freer. Also see Curatorial Remark 2 in the object record.

[2] See note 1. Also see Freer Gallery of Art Purchase List after 1920 file, Collections Management Office.

[3] See note 2.

Previous Owner(s) and Custodian(s)

Charles M. Kurtz 1855-1909
Isabel S. Kurtz 1901-1991

Description

Baluster-shaped vase with fairly wide mouth, thin lip and slightly averted rim. Short neck and gently flared and tapered foot trimmed to create narrow footring.

Clay: Porcelain, footrim slightly chipped and darkened on surface by use.

Glaze: Dark blue glaze colored with iron, chromium and iron appears to be dusted on to exterior. Green splotches scattered throughout the glaze. Milky-white mottling on shoulder and area above base suggest that colorless glaze, applied over blue pigment, was probably under fired. Colorless glaze applied to interior and foot slightly under fired and obscures blue potter's mark on foot. Unglazed footrim.

Decoration: Monochrome dark blue glazed bottle. The off-white of the interior contrasts with the dark blue of the body.

Signatures/Inscriptions: Two paper labels: "CMK 5" and "5/[square]/[2]" on foot. Potter's mark: "Kozan sei" in blue (cobalt) on foot. Two additional, undecipherable marks on foot outside of square.

Inscription(s)

Two paper labels: "CMK 5" and "5/[square]/[2]" on foot. .

Marking(s)

Potter's mark: "Kozan sei" in blue (cobalt) on foot. Two additional, undecipherable marks on foot outside of square

Label

This glaze represents one of the many new colors compounded with Western pigments. To produce its soft, mottled texture, Kozan adopted a Chinese technique of blowing the pigment through a fine-mesh gauze stretched over the end of a bamboo tube.

This vase was part of a collection formed by Charles M. Kurtz (1855-1909), during the period when he served as assistant art director for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago and art director for the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Centennial International Exposition in St. Louis. Kurtz's collecting focused on porcelain with highly colored glazed. Along with these pieces by prominent Japanese potters, Kurtz acquired vases of similar shapes and colors from American and European factories. Kurtz's collection, representative of a broad popular interest in Japanese art in the late nineteenth century, also reflects the growing internationalism in the decoration of ceramics resulting from rapid exchange of information and technology facilitated by the international fairs.

Collection Area(s)
Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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