Ko-Imari Blue and White Porcelain Cup with Earthly Branches Characters Design


A Ko-Imari cup made in the late Edo period. The twelve animals of the Earthly Branches (Chinese zodiac) are drawn in order in the round white windows.

This type of cup is called Nozoki-choko, and the blue ground design on white depiction, often seen as heron patterns, was produced around the Tenmei and Kansei periods (1781-1801) in Arita. However, this piece, designed completed characters of Earthly Branches design, is extremely rare. The artist’s playfulness is interspersed in the design, such as the rabbit and the monkey facing backwards and the dog and the boar in the same pose but somehow switched in order.

There are minor kiln scratches in one place, each on the rim and inside the base and a little unglazed spot, but there are no other actual defects, and the condition is excellent. It comes with a box.

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