Posted 9 months ago
This pottery ochoko (sake cup) is 2.25" in diameter x 1.75" high. It has a maker's mark on the bottom which I was able to identify as the mark of the Shusen Kiln, in the Gifu Prefecture. It falls under the Mino Yaki classification of pottery. One of the styles of Mino Yaki pottery is Shino Ware, which exhibits thick white glazes with red scorch marks and a surface which exhibits numerous small holes.
I think that there is an artist mark in the center of the bottom of the cup which has, unfortunately, been mostly covered by the glaze. The kiln mark, to the left of center in my images is pretty clear, though. This is a fairly high end ochoko and may have once had a tomobako, ukon-fu, etc., which are now long gone. Cups like this, even if they were not by a well known artist, were, and still are, often cased in a tomobako, ukon-fu, etc. I think the reddish decoration is iron oxide. It is only decorated on one side, but has interesting textures and glimpses of red on all sides.
It is a bit odd that I fairly often find sellers with only two ochoko, which are different from each other, for sale. This pair were the only Japanese things this seller had in their items for sale. This has happened for me several times. Odd...
I lost the light today so will try to get better images when it is sunny. My phone camera loves sunlight!
The research that I did for this cup also helped me to identify one of my other maverick ochoko as Shino Ware!