Monday, February 17, 2014


Though firmly rooted in the year of the horse, this wonderful rabbit okimono is worth a look none the less. The rabbit is ever-present in Japanese art as the lunar hare and a number of other depictions and according to the zodiac, one major characteristic of those born in the year of the rabbit is creativity. Made by Sodeisha co-founder and exceptionally creative ceramic artist, Suzuki Osamu (1926-2001), this pale blue seihakuji rabbit is one of a number of zodiac influenced pieces he made sometime after 1969. Though best known for his powerful, abstracted sculptural works, Suzuki left a large number of smaller and very intimate ceramic works which have little to do with function in the strictest sense, though objects of playfulness, enjoyment and contemplation are function enough. This particular piece is patterned after usagi-ningyo dolls that can be found in and around Kyoto, some with drawstring interiors filled with flagrant incense. Made in multiples, these were simple in design, execution and glazing and flawlessly capture a sense of whimsy and spirit of the ubiquitous Japanese rabbit.