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Vase

Vase

  • Place of origin:

    Yokohama (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1900-1910 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Miyagawa Kozan, born 1842 - died 1916 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Porcelain, with decoration in underglaze blue and brown

  • Credit Line:

    Presented by Lieutenant-Colonel Kenneth Dingwall DSO with Art Fund support

  • Museum number:

    C.244-1910

  • Gallery location:

    Japan, Room 45, The Toshiba Gallery, case 4

This vase was bought by its donor at the Japan-British exhibition held in London's White City in 1910. It is one of a substantial group of Japanese ceramics from this exhibition reticently accepted as a gift from Kenneth Dingwall at a time when the V&A had made a conscious decision to no longer collect modern Japanese artefacts. The Makuzu workshop was established in Yokohama, one of the main portals of trade with the West, in 1871. It initially produced Satsuma-style pottery painted in polychrome enamels and gold, but during the 1880s it focused increasingly on the making of porcelain, often in Chinese styles. In the case of this particular vase, however, and its masterful demonstration of crystalline glaze technology, it is more likely that the source of inspiration was contemporaneous works sold, at very high prices, by the Royal Copenhagen Manufactory.

Physical description

Porcelain vase in the form of two polar bears inside an icy cave. Layers of ice and snow are suspended from the top of the vase, melting over the cave and causing small turquoise streams to flow over the brown rocks. The heads and front legs of the polar bears are visible inside the opening of the cave.

Place of Origin

Yokohama (made)

Date

ca. 1900-1910 (made)

Artist/maker

Miyagawa Kozan, born 1842 - died 1916 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Porcelain, with decoration in underglaze blue and brown

Dimensions

Height: 22.2 cm, Diameter: 15.9 cm

Descriptive line

Vase in the form of two polar bears inside an icy cave; porcelain with decoration in underglaze turquoise and brown; 'Makuzu' ware, Miyagawa Kozan, Japan, ca. 1900-1910.

Labels and date

Vase in the form of polar bears inside an icy cave
1905–10

From the late 19th century, the Makuzu workshop produced porcelain for the western market. The source of inspiration for this remarkable object was models of polar bears made by the Royal Copenhagen Manufactory. The icy effect was created using experimental glaze techniques.

Marked ‘Makuzu’ for the Miyagawa Kōzan workshop
Yokohama
Porcelain painted in underglaze blue and brown
Dingwall Gift through the Art Fund
Museum no. C.244-1910
[04/11/2015]
Vase In The Form Of Two Polar Bears Inside An Icy Cave
Porcelain with decoration in underglaze turquoise and brown
Mark Makuzu impressed on base Yokohama, by Miyagawa Kozan (1842-1916)
About 1900-1910
C.244-1910
Dingwall Gift [1986]

Subjects depicted

Polar bear

Categories

Ph_survey; Containers; Porcelain; Ceramics

Collection

East Asia Collection

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