Amazing Imari Style Pair Black Vases with impressive Swans Golden Handles.
What is Imari Porcelain?
While porcelain was first fired and created in the early seventeenth century by Korean potters, thankfully Ri Sanpei brought this discovery over to Japan from the second invasion of Korea in 1597. The earliest images of Imari porcelain date back to this time and include porcelains in white and celadon hues with the traditional cobalt pigments.
However, as the practice of Imari porcelain became more advanced, it introduced the use of enamels in colors such as red, blue, yellow, green, purple and gold. This porcelain became quite popular in the later 1600s and led to a time of great wealth for the producers.
Imari is actually the name given to porcelains that were made in Arita, Hizen province which is on the island of Kyushu. While the production wasn’t limited to this area, many collectors look for pieces from this region. But the name Imari comes from the Japanese port town that was used by the Dutch to ship the porcelain to others parts of Japan as well as abroad.
What’s interesting to note is that not all Japanese porcelain is made at Arita, as is commonly thought, though many still (incorrectly) call all Japanese porcelain Imari.
The Kakiemon was one of the first lineages of potters that worked at the Nangawa kiln near the area of Arita. These potters were thought to have produced some of the finest Imari porcelain. While some research has indicated that Kakiemon was the first person to use the over-glaze enamels, this has been disproved as the Hizen region pre dates their usage.
The traditional colors that are found in Imari begin with the base of porcelain that is white in color. There is some porcelain that is slightly translucent, but these can be rare. Onto this porcelain, artisans would use a cobalt blue pigment – and this is typical versions of the Imari style. As the style developed and used enameling, the colors and any other pigments would be painted onto the already fired pure porcelain, though sometimes you could find that the porcelain itself has a blue undertone.
Height: 44, Width:26 , Length: 17 CM