Imari show at Suntory Museum

Little sumo wrestlers, Arita. The Edo period (1680-1710)

Little sumo wrestlers, Arita. The Edo period (1680-1710)

If you are in Tokyo in the next week, there is a great Porcelain show at  Suntory Museum in Roppongi. It is showcasing a style of white porcelain that became very popular in Europe in the 17th century that was exported from Japan. These pieces were greatly admired and adorned fancy mansions. Come and see the designs that Japanese artisans created and were brought back to Europe 400 years ago. It is ongoing till 3/16 if you happen to be in Tokyo!

Imari: Japanese Porcelain for European Palaces
Porcelain was first produced in the Arita region of what is now Saga Prefecture in the early seventeenth century. It was referred to as Imari because it was shipped from the port of Imari for distribution throughout Japan. The Dutch East India company exported Imari porcelain to Europe from the mid seventeenth century on. There these porcelains became not only luxurious functional products also status symbols enjoyed by royalty and aristocrats in their palaces and manor houses. This exhibition presents about 190 examples of Imari porcelains, principally export Imari from the collection of the Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka.


FIGURINES OF SUMO WRESTLERS (two sets)/, Porcelain with decoration in overglaze polychrome enamels, Arita ware, Edo period,  1680-1710s, The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, Photo by Kazuyoshi Miyoshi

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