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A fantastic purple tinged shino bucket vase with unusual handle by Matsuzaki Ken enclosed in the original signed wooden box. The vessel is created in a series of steps, steps up the face of the sides with cut away segments, steps up and around the rim leading to the peaks and juxtaposed by a natural almost flame-shaped handle intimating a branch thrust through the sides. All is covered in a thick crawling shino glaze highlighted throughout with purple tinged red. It is over 10 inches (26 cm) tall, 9 x 5-1/2 inches (21 x 14 cm) and is in excellent condition.
Matsuzaki Ken was born in Tokyo in 1950, and grew up in that dynamic post war era where tradition and modernity were at constant loggerheads. He graduated Tamagawa University in 1972, and moved to Mashiko to take up an apprenticeship under (to be) Living National Treasure Shimaoka Tatsuzo; putting him in direct lineage with Mingei legend Hamada Shoji. In 1978 he established the Yushin kiln, initially emulating the ordinary Mashiko-Mingei themes. However he could not be labeled so easily, and has sought expression in many forms and themes, including Shino, Hakeme, Yakishime, Zogan and porcelain. He is widely exhibited both inside and outside Japan, including New York, Boston and England and including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.