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Hiroko Nishida

Japanese potter. He is thought to have been the grandson of Chinese immigrants who came to Japan to escape the turbulence at the end of the Ming period (1368–1644). He was adopted into the Okuda family of wealthy pawnbrokers, who patronized the Buddhist temple Kenninji, where, according to one account, Eisen lodged for a time. The temple was famous as a centre of Chinese learning, and it was probably this contact that stimulated Eisen’s first attempts at making Chinese-style ceramics. By the 1780s he was producing copies of late Ming-period enamelled porcelain called ...

Article

Kenzan  

Japanese, 17th – 18th century, male.

Born 1663, in Kyoto Prefecture; died 1743.

Potter, painter.

Kenzan was the brother of Korin Ogata, the great Edo painter (1658-1716), and became known first as a ceramicist. He and Ninsei Nonomura introduced a new form of richly decorated ceramic art, which was very successful in the Genroku period (...

Article

Hiroko Nishida

Japanese family of ceramicists. They were active in Kyoto. The first-generation head, Kinkōzan Gen’emon, established a kiln at Awataguchi in the Shōhō era (1644–8). At first the family produced utilitarian objects, but later they made teabowls for the tea ceremony (chadō), particularly of the type known as ...

Article

Mokubei  

Japanese, 18th – 19th century, male.

Born 1767, in Kyoto; died 1833, in Kyoto.

Painter, potter.

Mokubei was a potter as well as a painter and a lover of illuminated art. An aesthetic intellectual evolving within an intellectual elite steeped in Chinese culture, he was the elder son of a patron of a restaurant or brothel in Kyoto. He was attracted to the arts at a very young age and left his father’s household aged 15....

Article

Kōzō Sasaki and Hiroko Nishida

Japanese potter, painter and scholar. He was born into the Kiya family of restaurateurs and adopted the surname Aoki only after becoming a painter. Mokubei, one of his many artist’s names, was created by combining the Chinese characters for ‘tree’ and ‘rice’ (a character anagram of his given name Yasohachi). His most familiar studio name (...