Bottle

Title

Bottle

Creator

Nobumasa MARUTA
Japanese, b. 1930

Date

1967

Description

Maruta works in Kuromuta, Saga Prefecture, an area touching the Sea of Japan and the Ariake Sea that is known for its ceramics. In the nineteenth century, forty workshops produced Kuramata ware. Today Maruta and his son run the last working kiln in the area.

The surface of this bottle is pitted and marked by breaks and darkening in the glaze. At first glance, the glaze appears to be simply gray; however, a closer examination shows that it is richly composed of whites, grays, and tans. Contrasting the multi-toned glaze, the front of the bottle is adorned by a design of irises painted in slip. Irises are a common motif in Japanese poetry, prints, ceramics, and other arts. In Japan, irises can be found in marshes, which may explain the choice of a muddy gray glaze. The regular form of the sleek bottle contradicts the more haphazard nature of the pitted glaze and the free-flowing image of irises.

Contributor

Palmer Museum of Art, The Pennsylvania State University

Identifier

86.360

Rights

This image is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. Other uses are not permitted.

Format

Kuromuta stoneware; Height: 12-1/2 in. (31.7 cm)