Winter Antiques Show

Confronting Tradition in Clay: Japanese National Living Treasures versus Iconoclasts

January 21 – 30, 2011

Kawamoto Gorô (1919 - 1986)
Attenuated and animated pouring vessel with surface decoration of dancing figure done in relief
ca. 1976
10 1/4 x 6 1/2 x 11 3/8 inches
Inv# 6203

Tokuda Yasokichi III (1933 - 2009)
Round plate with glazes in hues of deep purple with blue and green accents in infused kutani glazes, ca. 1995
Glazed porcelain
15 3/8 x 3 1/2 inches
Inv# 6658 SOLD

Kawai Kanjirô (1890-1960)
Shallow square bowl with yellow (kiraku) glaze, abstracted design of a "flower in hand" with brown, black, white, red and green glazes outlined in trailed slip (tsutsugaki), ca. 1950
2 3/4 x 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 inches; Inv# 3902 SOLD

Hamada Shôji (1894-1978)
Salt-glazed tea bowl with combed design, ca. 1960
Stoneware with salt-glaze
3 1/2 x 4 7/16 inches
Inv# 6092

Hamada Shoji (1894-1978)
Ash-glazed flower vase with vertical applied bands, ca. 1965
Glazed stoneware
11 5/8 × 6 3/8 inches
Inv# 6765 SOLD

Kondô Yuzo (1902 - 1985)
White glazed porcelain vase with cobalt blue underglaze decoration of pomegranates, ca. 1955
Glazed Porcelain
6 1/2 x 6 inches
Inv# 6707 SOLD

Matsui Kosei (1927-2003)
Covered box with neriage (marbelized) clay inlays in white, blue and grey, 1989
Stoneware with marbleized colored inlay
5 1/2 x 10 inches
Inv# 6636 SOLD

Kawai Kanjirô (1890-1960)
Round covered box with combed decoration, 1927
Temmoku-glazed stoneware
4 1/2 x 4 3/4 inches
Inv# 6830

Kawai Kanjiro (1890-1960)
Three color-splashed glazed square (henko) stoneware flask-vase with red and green glazes on black ground, ca. 1960
Glazed stoneware
8 3/8 x 7 3/8 inches SOLD
Inv# 6868

Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003)
Ovoid vase striped with blue, gray and white marbleized colored clay, ca.1977
Stoneware with marbleized colored inlay
11 1/4 x 8 1/2 inches
Inv# 6556 SOLD

Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003)
Neriage teacup with brown, khaki and cream colored clays, ca. 2003
Glazed stoneware
3 1/2 x 3 1/4 inches
Inv# 5580 SOLD

Kusube Yaichi (1897-1984)
Turquoise glazed sculptured vessel, ca. 1955
Stoneware with opaque turquoise-blue glaze
11 1/2 x 7 1/2 inches
Inv# 6463

Kusube Yaichi (1897-1984)
Circular gray art-deco style sculpted vessel , ca. 1955
Porcelain with opaque matte grayish-white glaze
12 1/2 x 11 x 11 1/2 inches
Inv# 6464

Sakaida Kakiemon XIV (b. 1934)
Large white porcelain vase with polychrome overglaze decoration of cockscomb plants, ca. 1985
11 5/8 x 5 7/8 inches
Inv# 6634

Katô Kiyoyuki (b. 1953)
Blue-black ash-glazed stoneware vase with long slender neck, ca. 1965
Glazed stoneware
10 1/2 x 4 1/4 x 4 inches
Inv# 6772

Shimaoka Tatsuzô (1919 - 2007)
Round platter with slip-filled, cord-impressed pattern and floral design on iron glaze ground, 1972
Stoneware with iron glazes and turquoise-green glaze
Inv# 6363

Kitaoji Rosanjin (1883-1959)
White shino-glazed square plate with designs in iron oxide red glaze, ca. 1950
Stoneware with white shino and iron-oxide red glazes
2 3/4 x 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 inches
Inv# 3481

Kamoda Shoji (1933-1983)
Spherical stoneware acid-etched vase, 1967
Unglazed stoneware
10 x 12 inches
Inv# 6855

Kawai Kanjirô (1890-1960)
Small broad-shouldered flattened vessel with raised neck and slip-trailing decoration , 1950
Copper-red shinsha glazed stoneware
6 3/4 x 5 inches SOLD
Inv# 6824

Fujimoto Yoshimichi (1919 - 1992)
Stoneware vase with iron-glazed alternating designs of heron and grasses ca. 1967
Glazed stoneware
11 3/8 x 12 inches
Inv# 6867

Wada Morihiro (1944 - 2008)
Faceted teabowl with white, red, gray and black glazes, ca. 1985
Glazed stoneware
3 3/8 x 4 1/2 inches
Inv# 6768

Okabe Mineo
Oribe glazed circular vessel with low walls, ca. 1965
Stoneware with copper green oribe glaze
3 7/8x 11 7/8 inches
Inv# 6766

Kawai Kanjirô (1890-1960)
Pale green crackleur and iron-oxide glazed lobed vase, ca. 1938
7 3/4 x 8 1/4 inches
Inv# 6555

Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003)
Neriage vessel with inlays of black, white and red clays and sand treated surface , 1985
Stoneware with marbleized colored clay inlays
12 5/8 x 12 1/5 inches
Inv# 5696

Nakajima Hiroshi (b. 1941)
Banded standing vessel with protruding rectangular patterning covered in crackleur celadon glaze, ca. 1991
Glazed Porcelain

Kondo Yuzo (1902 - 1985)
Gold overglazed porcelain vase with cobalt blue underglaze decoration of pomegrantes, ca. 1978
Glazed Porcelain
8 1/4 x 9 1/4 inches

Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003)
Small neriage conical vase with marbleized gray, beige and white colored clays, ca. 1977
Stoneware with marbleized colored inlay
6 7/8 x 6 1/8 inches
Inv# 6557

Suzuki Osamu (1926-2001)
“Foreigner”: Vertical shigaraki stoneware sculpture, 1988
21 1/2 x 9 3/4 x 6 1/2 inches
Inv# 5119

Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003)
White and tan marbelized clay (neriage) spherical vase with cracked surface, ca. 1979
Stoneware with marbleized colored clay inlays
6 x 4 1/8 inches
Inv# 6743

Yamada Hikaru (1923-2001)
Diamond-shaped glazed perforated stoneware sculpture titled “Intersecting
Clay Planes", 1972
Glazed stoneware
12 1/4 x 12 1/4 x 3 1/8 inches, Base: 2 1/4 h. x 6 1/4 x 4.75
Inv# 6751; SOLD

Press Release

Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. will present “Confronting Tradition in Clay: Japanese Living National Treasures vs Iconoclasts” at the Winter Antiques Show held in the Park Avenue Armory, Park Avenue & 67th Street, NY.

Over thirty masterful ceramic works will be exhibited by celebrated artists who have mastered, preserved and re-invented centuries-old clay traditions as well as by those ceramists who refused to conform to any specific tradition or aesthetic and pushed the boundaries of function into the realm of sculpture. While stars in Japan, many of these names are quite unknown in the West to all but a few cognoscenti. This will be the first time that these artists will have work exhibited at this established fair.

Starting in 1952, the Japanese government designated specific artists, traditional musicians and performing artists as “Intangible Cultural Properties” later termed “Living National Treasure” (ningen kokuhô). These individuals were viewed by the government as the embodiment of a tradition and the preservers (keepers) of that aesthetic and technique for future generations. According to Mirviss, “This official perspective continues to view ‘tradition’ as the creation of something new from what one has been inherited rather than simply recreating ancient vessels.” Many of the early recipients of this designation were indeed pioneers in addition to being protectors of respected ancient techniques and styles:

such as Hamada Shôji (1894-77), Fujiwara Kei (1899-1983), Ishiguro Munemaro (1893-1968), Kondo Yûzô (1913-83), Kusube Yaichi (1897-1984), Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003), Shimizu Uichi (1926-2004), and Tamura Kôichi (1918-87) among others.

While some clay artists strove to reach this particular pinnacle of fame and national recognition, others have refused this honor, such as the renowned ceramists Kitaôji
Rosanjin (1883-1959) and Kawai Kanjirô (1890-1966). They and others whose works stand outside of any recognized tradition have persevered either as independent artists or as
part of alternative associations. A few of the leading figures in this area include Kamoda Shôji (1933-1983), Kawamoto Gorô (1919-1986), and Okabe Mineo (1919-1990). However it was the post-war groundbreaking path of the non- functional clay movement called Sôdeisha led by Yagi Kazuô (1918-79), who, together with Suzuki Osamu (1926-2001) and Yamada Hikaru (1923- 2001), strenuously broke from the traditional system in 1948 to seek out creative autonomy and artistic independence.

Mirviss further stated, “After viewing this substantial body work, it becomes readily evident that these ceramists stand as pioneering masters in the history of post-war international clay. Their impact is still being felt today by an entirely new generation of Japanese artists.”

For visuals or further information, please contact Marilyn White at 973-783-3649 or; alternatively at the gallery, Nami Hoppin at 212-799-4021 or; or visit