Shimizu Bizan, a pair of red and gold sake cups with three characters

Shimizu Bizan     清水 美山

red and gold style, a pair of sake cup with three characters “福禄寿”

Size : diameter about 5.6 cm   high about 3.0 cm and 3.1 cm

Even though it is a pair, the size seemed to be slightly different, because of either hand-molding or shrinkage after baking.

condition : good on the surface, no chips and no crack

In this work, a design and patterns with the wishes of “happiness” and “longevity” are drawn on the surface of small sake cup. The three kanji characters “福禄寿” on the inner side, “crane” on the inner center, and “turtle pattern” on the outer side are precisely painted. This is expected that the wishes of “happiness” and “longevity” can be expressed in red and gold. As might be expected, this work is made by master craftsman of Meiji, Shimizu bizan.

This synthesized image “福禄寿” is made up of three kanji written on the inside of small sake cup. Originally, “福禄寿” (fuku-roku-ju) is one of the Seven Lucky Gods. Each Kanji, “福” means happiness, “禄” means identity, “寿” means longevity, and god of “福禄寿” have been believed by people. To put it a little more succinctly, the first two characters “福祿” are interpreted as happiness and the last “寿” is interpreted as longevity, and “福禄寿” have been worshiped as a god that brings happiness and longevity.

It is said that god of “福禄寿” was taken by “crane” and “turtle”, and both the crane and the turtle had the meaning of wishing for “Long Life”. A crane is delicately drawn on the center of the cup, and the turtle as “turtle pattern” is drawn on the outer edge.

A lotus flower pattern is drawn around the foot (ko-dai). This pattern is usual on the back of many Meiji kutani, but like this work, such a fine line drawing is rare.

The name is “Kutani Bizan”, and in the same way, “Kutani Bizan” is written on the back of the box lid. This means kutani made with all heart of Bizan.

about creator  Shimizu Bizan   清水美山

Shimizu Bizan  1861-1931

Shimizu Bizan learned pottery painting from Kutani Shoza’s high brother, Kasama Shuseki (笠間秀石), and in 1880 he mastered the technique of painting of gold fitting up in Tokyo. Since then, he devised various techniques and painting styles, so he was called the master craftsman of Kanazawa Kutani. In addition, it is said that he produced many famous trade products representing Japan Kutani.

reference № 18101507
date of exhibition  2019.11.17
selling and buying under consideration