Friday, November 16, 2012


Long before the stellar painted porcelains, potter Tomimoto Kenkichi (1886-1963) made his way through everything from Raku, slipware and decorated stonewares. His friendship with Bernard Leach and Yanagi Soetsu exposed him to a wide array of pottery and pottery techniques as well as painting and print making, all of which he was more than enthusiastic to try for himself and designs of this type are heavily influenced by mingei. The illustrated ink and watercolor shows his keen sense of form, perspective and decorative interests with washes of subtle color helping to define the design. Elements of this particular design can be seen on a number of Tomimoto's stoneware and porcelain pots made throughout his life while the sometsuke rendering of this style of decoration in varying shades and washes of cobalt on porcelain remain among my favorite. They are stark, simple and dramatically to the point.
"There is no eloquence without a man behind it."   Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)