Kogo (Incense Box)
Arakawa Toyozo, an apprentice of Kitaoji Rosanjin, devoted his life to re-creating Shino and yellow-and-black Seto wares of the Momoyama period. He eventually received the Japanese honor of being designated a Living National Treasure. The donor of this object relates the fascinating story of her meeting with the artist in 1956. Together they viewed the famous Chinese painting of six persimmons (kaki) by the Song artist Mu Ch'i (active thirteenth century), which was on view in an exhibition of treasures in a Japanese museum.
Arakawa went back to his studio and fashioned this small incense box in the form of the fruit, firing it with the simple but effective decoration technique known as nezumi-Shino (gray Shino). He then gave it to Mrs. Conant as a memento of their experience.
Gray Shino Ware; stoneware with feldspathic glaze over iron slip
Gift of Ellen Conant
Incense box in the shape of a persimmon. Small globular box that separates into a flattened hemispherical lower section with a stepped-in, unglazed lip and a domical lid with a knob in the form of a persimmon stem. Recessed foot, four subtle vertical indentations, realistically-modeled leaf-like cap. Covered except for the lip areas with a gray glaze mottled to reddish brown depending on its thickness and the presence of iron oxide on the clay surface. Three prominent spur marks on footrim.
Condition: No damage.
This item is not on view
Arakawa Toyozo (Japanese, 1894-1985). Kogo (Incense Box), ca. 1956. Gray Shino Ware; stoneware with feldspathic glaze over iron slip, 2 1/4 x 2 3/8 in. (5.7 x 6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Ellen Conant, 76.207. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 76.207_bw.jpg)
overall, 76.207_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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