Hirado rice bowl set
Set of three delicate, sometsuke rice cups finely potted in Hirado with exquisitely brushed chrysanthemum motifs and a solitary butterfly on exterior, and unadorned white porcelain interiors. The tiny island of Hirado produced porcelains of excellent quality because of the extraordinarily fine kaolin clay discovered there. This material was used at kilns at Mikawachi within the borders of the Matsuura fiefdom. Finely potted porcelains were produced in such kilns for 250 years exclusively for the Matsuura lords for their own use and as presentation pieces to the Shogun and other nobility. See Hirado: Prince of Porcelains, Louis Lawrence (1997, Encyclopedia of Japanese Art series); and compare (at p.44, pl 11) a rice bowl with chrysanthemum sprays painted in underglaze-blue on pristine white porcelain, like the three in our set. 18th Cent . 4” (10 cm) diameter x 1-3/4” (4.4cm) high.