Important Cultural Property

Pair of Tea Bowls with a lozenge pattern in gold and silver

By Nonomura Ninsei



Artist By Nonomura Ninsei
Period Edo period, 17th century
Materials and techniques Stoneware with overglaze enamels
Size Gold: H.8.1 MD.8.9 BD.4.9, Silver: H.9.2 MD.9.9 BD.4.9


This is a pair of nesting tea bowls, the one decorated with the gold lozenges made smaller to fit in the one with the silver lozenges. Very thinly potted, they have the slightest swell at the waist, giving a softness to their shapes. The design, which is striking and most original among Ninsei's works, is believed to reflect the taste of Kanamori Sōwa, a leading tea master of the time. The interior surface is covered with a black glaze, while the exterior surface has lozenge patterns on a white ground in the upper portion and motifs of lotus flowers in the lower portion. Both bowls have a small stamp mark of "Ninsei" impressed on the foot. The bowls were made as a gift to be presented to Tōfukumon-in, the wife of Emperor Go-Mizuno-o.