a modern twist on classical ceramics

I’m often asked by people (clients, peers in the interior design world and other acquaintances) what they should collect.  I like to think they’re asking me because of my knowledge of the art world, but often their underlying question is really “what can I collect whose value will appreciate in the future”.

The shamans and snake oil sellers in the art world may have an answer, but nobody has a crystal ball to predict the future, so what I do is collect objects I LOVE and can afford.  But because I’ve also been training my eye for MANY years, I have a knack for picking some winners.
Ceramics of the 20th – 21st century is an area I like.  Although the technique is millenary, some of the objects created in and around my lifetime are quite extraordinary.  For example, take a look at the work of Japanese ceramicist Matsui Kôsei (1927-2003) above.
Designated a Living National Treasure by the Japanese government in 1993, Matsui nearly single-handedly brought the refined art of colored-clay ware (neriage) back from classical China where it was in vogue during the Tang dynasty (7th – 10th centuries). Isn’t this just amazing?  With its rough-hewn surface texture and color palette it’s impossibly modern and a on a table, the look is impossibly chic.
image credit: Joan B. Mirviss, Ltd.  Japanese Fine Art, New York.
(left) Matsui Kôsei, small early neriage vase, marbelized stoneware, c. 1965. 3.7/8 x 3.5/8 x 3.1/2 in | 10 x 9.3 x 8.9 cm.
(right) Matsui Kôsei, globular neriage vase, stoneware with marbleized colored clay inlays, 5.1/2 x 6 in. | 14 x 15.2 cm.
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