Initially, the Saga Prefecture was popular for porcelain and beautiful ceramic. It was the birthplace of the most iconic and unique porcelain styles, such as Arita and Imari. These early styles of porcelain influenced the new Kutani ware. The older styles are now known as Ko Kutani or more commonly as Old Kutani. These references distinguish the two art pieces.
Kutani is the name of the village where the first porcelain kilns were built and operated in the Kaga Province. The first porcelain created bore a close resemblance to Imari and Arita. However, thanks to Goto Saijiro and his overglaze techniques, the difference is astounding. This technique ensured Kutani stood differentiated from its predecessors. Additionally, the use of bold colors like green, blue, red, yellow, and purple made it stand out from others.
Every new piece had a striking detail-rich in vivid colors. The result was enhanced imagery of scenes that spoke of Japanese history and culture. Every piece tells a story painted beautifully on porcelain. Since he was, the only Kutani artist at the time without a family to pass it on it wasn’t exactly a lucrative business. Moreover, the infrequent distribution of Kutani pieces meant that it was not an established business.
This led to an early closure of Kutani kilns due to reasons unknown. While some speculate that the reason was lack of finances, others believe that it was the sourcing of raw materials that put an end to Kutani porcelain. On the other hand, this has made Kutani all the more valuable and rare to find. Today, Ko Kutani pieces are considered priceless and for all the right reasons too.
The story of Kutani-yaki goes as far back as the 17th century. Maeda Toshiharu, the first Lord of the Daishoji Domain instructed his retainer Goto Saijiro to seek the education of pottery in Hizen-arita. This happened soon after the magnetite technique was discovered in Kaneyama, Kutani.
Today, Kutani is Sannaka cho in Ishikawa Prefecture where the retainer adopted the ancient techniques. Then, he built a kiln in Kutani which is popularly known as the beginning of Kutani-yaki. The bold use of colors, birds and animals in unique patterns painted on pottery id what makes Kutani ware what it is today.
Kutani ware is a traditional Japanese craft with a history of over 360 years. Among the many types of Japanese ceramics, Kutani ware is characterized by its vivid colors. Kutani-yaki is extremely popular not only in Japan but also overseas. Just by changing your usual tableware to your favorite Kutani Yaki, meals can feel more delicious.
At the store, in order to make the wonderful Kutani ware more accessible to people outside of Japan. The brand will continue to operate their shop, implementing a variety of ideas, so that the company can deliver Kutani ware to people overseas at almost the same price as buying it in Japan. They will continue to operations while making various efforts.