This Kutani ware home decoration is in the design of an adorable rabbit on a beautifully decorated tree stump base.
The rabbit of this decorative item is called a "Mizunoto-u" which is the specific name for the zodiac rabbit sign for the year 2023. The Mizunoto-u represents calmness and gentle warmth which can be felt through its round shape and charming expression.
The unique and traditional method used to decorate the surface of the rabbit and the tree stump is a technique called "mori-e" which is similar to the technique of slip trailing. A thick paint is squeezed out of an "icchin," a dispenser with a fine tip, and patterns are carefully painted onto the surface. Mori-e adds decorative patterns and tactile textures to smooth porcelain surfaces.
The tree stump base is colored in bright yellow and orange hues, and decorated with auspicious patterns of pine trees, bamboo leaves and plum blossoms using the mori-e technique. The base is further complemented with gold highlights stemming from its sides adding to its appeal.
The front side of the rabbit is also adorned with plum blossoms outlined with detailed yellow lines and fine small dots.
This decorative item is set on a wooden tray with a red felt cloth that gives the piece a special and auspicious appearance. It also comes with a wooden plate written with the name of the kiln and the Japanese character for "Kutani." It is a wonderful decor item to set in a room for good luck and to add a festive atmosphere to any space in a home.
Choho Kiln was established at the end of the Taisho era (1912-1926), and has continued to operate as a wholesaler and manufacturer of Kutani Ware.
Chosaku Nishi, the first generation Choho and his younger brother studied and developed the "mori-e" technique of painting to be used to decorate figurines and larger decor items. Mori-e is the technique where thick paint is squeezed out of an "icchin," a dispenser with a fine tip, and patterns are carefully painted onto a surface. This technique suited Kutani figurines very well, and henceforth mori-e became the mainstream technique to decorate Kutani ware figurines and larger items.
The second generation Choho learned various techniques from his father and established the foundation of Choho Kiln.
In recent years, their main products have been interior decorations and ornaments. The third generation Choho continues to preserve traditional techniques and patterns while adopting a modern sensibility.
Kutani ware in the zodiac motif of the year have long been celebrated as lucky charms to welcome the New Year. This is a great gift for people who love Japanese culture and art as it comes in a well-crafted paper box with a lid labeled with the characters for "Kutani ware" in Japanese.