Edo period, late 17th-early 18th century
Porcelain painted with overglaze enamels (Arita ware, Kutani style)
Kutani Ware: The Status of Materials
A distinctive feature of Edo culture was the high esteem in which artists working
in what we would now consider the "decorative" arts were held. The great
artists in tea ceremony ceramics, lacquer, or textiles, for example, were often as
renowned as the great painters.
These Kutani dishes, made in the Arita kilns, have a characteristic blue-black, green,
purple, and yellow palette. The distinctive colors and patterns are probably based
on contemporary textile arts. The creativity of the textile arts was valued in its
own time, and the status accorded to that material is illustrated and preserved here
in the more enduring medium of ceramics.