Bowl in the Shape of a Stylized Sandbank with a Handle


Bowl in the Shape of a Stylized Sandbank with a Handle

ceramics / Edo

Mino ware, Oribe type

Edo period, 17th century

Stoneware with underglaze brown

高17.7 長径24.5 短径22.0


This is a large Oribe ware bowl with a handle attached. It was probably made to serve food for sharing. It was mainly used during tea ceremonies.

A glance at the object from above reveals a very strange shape. It almost looks like an inverted version of Mickey Mouse's face, but this traditional design actually represents an inlet and a beach.

The handled section acts as a border, with one side made of white clay and the other red clay. A green glaze is applied to the white ground, while white clay is used to draw feathers and other geometric shapes on the red ground.

Oribe ware ceramics were produced in the Mino district in present-day Gifu Prefecture from the late Azuchi-Momoyama Period to the Edo Period. As this bowl aptly demonstrates, these ceramics are characterized by thick, green glaze and freely-expressed shapes and patterns.

Oribe ware takes its name from Furuta Oribe, a renowned tea master and a pupil of Sen no Rikyu, the man said to have perfected the tea ceremony. This bowl, produced many years after Oribe's death, was probably designed to match the great master's individualistic tastes.

What kind of food would you serve in it?

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