Friday, June 26, 2015


As I look at this noble and elegant platter, I can not help but think of some of the later Rimpa masters of the Edo period. The imagery conjures up thoughts of Sakai Hoitsu and his pupil Suzuki Kiitsu as well as the late master of the style, Kamisaka Sekka (1866-1942), all pursued the refinement of design with elements of stylization of which the sparse decoration on this plate so eloquently reflects. Wakao Toshisada is a master of this style, his Rimpa-esque pottery adds to the legacy of this tradition while as potter, painter and designer, his works show a truly inspired understanding of using two dimensional design to articulate a three dimensional form. The grand sweep of the iron running from upper to lower corner brings life to the piece while the use of two lone iris and leaves suggests a lush and contemplative Heian garden. Wakao understands the power of suggestion and it is seen in most of his works allowing the viewer to be moved, transported to differing times and places; this is the lure of his work which fits well in to the legacy that is Rimpa.