Meiji kutani (it means a lot of excellent kutani produced mainly in the Meiji period) left a big mark on the history of Japanese porcelain, and the porcelain painters who repeated creating the excellent kutani one after another, were engraved in the history of kutani. From this, it can be said that a lot of master craftsmen who appeared in the Meiji period were brought up by Meiji kutani.
The Japanese government first exhibited carefully selected crafts from all over Japan at the World’s Fair in Vienna (1873). At that time kutani was noticed by the Western countries. Every timer kutani was exhibited, it was praised as “Japan Kutani”. Eexcellent kutani was exhibited at the World’s Fairs in Philadelphia (1876) and Paris (1878) and was requested by the Western countries to be more Japanese paintings. Kutani ranged from finely decorated vases, incense burners, platters and other works of art to everyday items such as tableware.
In the early Meiji period, kutani was required by the Western countries to have a high level of Japanese painting-style and artistic expressiveness, but it was not the so-called one-person craftsmen who responded to that demand, but potters and the descendants with a history of the revived kutani kilns in the late Edo period. Most of them learned paintings such as the Kano school when they were young, or Japanese paintings that were born in the Meiji period, and then studied porcelain paintings at famous kilns in Ishikawa prefecture, so had the skill to draw designs and patterns like Japanese paintings on the body of porcelain.
In this way, the porcelain painters who created excellent kutani including a part of excellent export kutani handled by pottery merchants, created various excellent painting styles and techniques one after another, and received high praise both inside and outside the country. Befitting their high reputation, they came to be called a master craftsman. At this time, Meiji kutani took on the aspects of a hundred flowers. Therefore, it is thought that many master craftsmen appeared in the Meiji period were brought up in the Meiji kutani created by them.
Some of the works posted on this website are works created by the high expressiveness and technical skills of master craftsmen and are suitable to be called masterpieces.