Jar with lid
Jar with Lid
1700s, Edo period
Porcelain with underglaze blue, and overglaze enamel
Named after the port from where it was exported to Europe and elsewhere, this type of Japanese porcelain is generally called “Imari,” although these pieces came from kilns at Arita, in Saga Prefecture. Imari ware is characterized by its kinrande decoration, a combination of underglaze blue with overglaze red and gold enamel. The images of birds and Chinese lions (karashishi) on this covered jar were popular themes on Imari porcelains. Most likely one of a pair, this jar has a karashishi with an open mouth at the top of its dome lid. The karashishi on the matching jar presumably had its mouth closed, since that was the usual configuration of these protective animals.