Late 1800s, Meiji period
Porcelain with overglaze enamel and gold
Bequest of the Chandler Weaver Estate
During the Edo period (1615–1868), Japanese trade with the outside world was limited to contact with Dutch merchants at the port of Nagasaki. Despite this limited access, Japanese luxury goods became highly desired in Europe and the Americas. A fascination with Japan, known by the French term "japonisme," had a great impact on artists in the West, including the Impressionists. With the opening of Japan to the West in the Meiji period, interest in Japanese ceramics grew. Japanese potters showed off their technical perfection and masterly painting in eye-catching objects like this vase, which is covered with brocade-like patterns and paintings of flowers, birds, and warriors. The sumptuous use of gold and raised decoration (moriage) would be gratifying to the proud owner of such a possession.