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Petra on pottery

featuring West German art pottery, Fat Lava and more 20th century ceramics

In this post a little, Japanese intermezzo with this very nice vase that was made on the island of Awaji. Japan has quite a reputation as a pottery producing country. Awaji pottery was produced roughly between 1830 and 1939. This vase must have been produced in the 1920’s. It has the Awaji mark with “Made in Japan” added to it. Also is has somewhat of an Art Deco appearance. The vase was probably made for the European export market.

It is a sturdy little vase of about 19 cm/7,5″ tall. I bought it via the internet where it was advertized without any information on its origin, markings or age. I offered to pay 15 euro’s, but they would probably have sold it to me for 10. My husband went to pick it up and called me from the location to make sure I really wanted it, because it said “Made in Japan” on the base. He said it like he was saying “Made in Taiwan”. I doubted for a second. It was kind of funny, a Japanese Art Deco-like vase. It could be kitsch. Still the vase intrigued me and it was not a lot of money. When in doubt, ask yourself if it would still look nice on the sidetable with some flowers in it. I thought it would look very nice, this funny-looking vase flexing its muscles, so I bought it anyhow.

When I tried to find anything about it on the internet, I found out Japan has a great many kilns, with different traditions and pottery styles. Where to start? For a long time it felt like looking for a needle in a haystack and I gave up for a while. Via the Pottery and Glas forum I finally found a link to a site on Japanese porcelainmarks and discovered my vase was Awaji pottery. On the website of the artdealer Thomas K Libby I found an introductory text on Awaji pottery and some wonderful other examples (not for 15 euros though…). I would love to find another for the bargainprice I got on this vase, but no such luck yet.

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