Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Almost three years ago, I wrote about being a somewhat accidental collector of guinomi. In the accompanying picture there is a group of guinomi, in the center back of the picture is a rather pivotal piece in that it was the first Tsukigata Nahiko piece that I had acquired. I had first become aware of the work of Tsukigata back in the very early 1980's and through the use of inter-library loan, I was able to secure a copy of the book Oni-Shino for an extended stay of four weeks, so my interest in his pottery is hardly a passing fancy, in fact, his work is among the most electrifying and interesting I have encountered. Flash forward nearly two decades and thanks to a large internet auction site, I happened to find this large Shigaraki style guinomi by Tsukigata Nahiko. No box nor identification in the auction, just all of the tell tale characteristics of the potter and for less than $20, it was the inaugural Tsukigata addition to the collection that was never intended and just keeps on growing.
Thrown out of Shigaraki clay and woodfired in his anagama the body of the piece was first dipped in an ash glaze which is like a coating of rich bidoro with a wonderful pool of green in the bottom of the guinomi. The foot is flashed with a rich coat of color from where the flames liked the bulky pedestal creating a great, wet contrast to the body. Inside the foot ring is Tsukigata's signature, boldly carved and in all my years of studying his work, I have never seen a similar piece in terms of surface though I am aware he has made Shigaraki pottery along with his best known styles. Having used this guinomi on occasion, I can tell you it is both generous in its contents and satisfying in its function.