Fine Antique Asian Art, Buddhist Statues, Tea Bowls, Japanese Ceramics, Chinese Paintings,

Ko-E-Karatsu Katakuchi Chawan

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Tea Articles: Pre 1700: Item # 1466669

Please refer to our stock # 0560 when inquiring.
Momoyama Gallery
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Richard van Norten - by appointment
Avenue Royal - Luxembourg / Europe


A magnificent Kogaratsu Katakuchi Chawan (Ko-Karatsu tea bowl with a pouring spout), fired between the Azushi Momoyama period (1573-1603) and the early stage of the Edo Period (1603-1868).

It is no exaggeration to say that this tea bowl needs to be described as a true museum quality piece of art.

Especially such old Karatsu bowls are rarely available in the version of a Katakuchi bowl. Essentially, it's a bowl with a spout. But not just any bowl: its details are specially designed for the preparation of Matcha. It allows you to either prepare and enjoy Matcha directly inside it, like a Chawan bowl or to prepare a perfect base and then pours it into one or more tasting cups.

This Ko-Karatsu Katakuchi tea bowl is also a so called E-Karatsu version. The e (meaning "picture") referring to the iron-underglaze paintings of reeds, geometric patterns, or even figurative scenes such as a farmer crossing a bridge. E-Garatsu marks the first time such iron-underglaze decoration was used in Japan. 

Our Ko-E-Karatsu has two underglaze paintings. The first is showing the design of a fan, considered as a symbol of happiness and prosperity.

Fans did not gain popularity and commerce in Japan until the 12th century. These were used for ceremonial purposes and remained until the 19th century as an item of the Japanese court. In the beginning only the emperor was allowed to use the fan called Hiogi. Although, over time, use was allowed for all social levels. Over time, several variations of this item appeared. The fan called Gunsen it was used by Generals, Samurai and court officials as a means of signaling during battles. There were also those used in plays and dance shows called Chukei or Noh.

Fan fame in Japan continued, but it was in the Edo period (1690-1868) that popularization and most significant changes occurred.

The second underglaze painting shows two plovers. The plover, chidori in Japanese 千鳥. The bird is an auspicious symbol associated with longevity because its cry 'chiyo' is a homonyn for 'chiyo' meaning "1000 generations." The association of chidori with long life was mentioned in KOKINWAKASHUU (early 10c) and was especially popular in waka during the Heian and Kamakura periods.

Ko-Karatsu, like Ko-Bizen and Ko-Shigaraki, has touched the hearts and lives of ceramic lovers everywhere, and continues to inspire potters today. Ko-Karatsu also points us toward forms in which beauty and functionality combine to enrich our lives. That is the true timeless beauty of Ko-Karatsu.

This unique antique piece of art comes with a very good Japanese wooden box.

No chips, cracks or repairs.

Size: 8,3 cm height x 11,5 cm diameter.

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