Cornucopia: Ceramics from Southern Japan

December 19, 2009 – January 9, 2011

Freer Gallery of Art
Jefferson Drive and 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC

Galleries 6, 6A, & 7 Floor Plan

This exhibition illuminates the engaging variety of local styles of glazing and decoration invented by Kyushu potters over three centuries. Around the year 1600, a heightened fascination with the design and uses of ceramics combined with new access to advanced technology launched an era of extraordinarily diverse and accomplished ceramic production. Southern Japan -- in particular, the island of Kyushu -- was the center for this efflorescence, which included both stoneware coated in muted glazes and porcelain ornamented with cobalt blue or multicolored enamels. Hundreds of kilns produced vessels for the domestic market (with a focus on utensils for dining and for the tea ceremony) and also for export to Europe and Southeast Asia.