I think I might finally be getting better! So I hope I’ll be able to start updating regularly again.

Crimson-War-Fan-Chinese-Herbs Patterned Hearth Frame
Made by Soutetsu the Eleventh

This hearth frame from the collection of the House of Onishi uses wood from the sawakuri tree which is little affected by the passing of years. It is lacquered in the kakiawase-style, varnished first with an underlayer of persimmon juice which highlights the grain of the wood beautifully, and then overlayed with a layer of moist lacquer. On each of the four sides is a war fan, and a pattern of Chinese herbs playing along the frame sides. This pine war fan design is the family crest of the kettle craftsman House of Onishi. When Onishi Kiyomoto the Ninth was adopted from the House of Okudaira, this crest was also adopted.

If you look closely, the pine branches of two of the four war fans are in green, the other two are depicted in silver. Also, we know that it was made before the 30th year of Showa by Gensai Soutetsu the Eleventh from the inscription written on the outside of the frame. As “made upon request” is written on it, it was probably made in response to a commission by the House of Onishi on the occasion of a celebration, and is a one of a kind work.

Kettle: Houunsai Daisoushou Favoured, Pawlonia Crest, Made by Onishi Seishin (Onishi Seiwemon Art Museum Collection)

朱軍配唐草文炉縁(平成24年11月)
十一代宗哲造

大西家に所蔵されるこの炉縁は、経年しても狂いの少ない沢栗を木地として使用しており、木目が美しく映えるよう柿渋で下塗りし、その上から潤漆を塗った掻合のつくりとなっている。四方に一つずつ軍配を配し、その背に銀で唐草文を遊ばせている。この松の軍配文は釜師・大西家の家紋であり、九代大西浄元が奥平家より養子入りするにあたり、ともに受け断がれたものだという。
近づいてよく見てみると、四つの軍配のうち二つは松の枝を緑に、残りのもう二つは銀に描き分けたようだ。また炉縁側面に記された銘から、十一代元斎宗哲はこれを昭和三十年以前に製作したのだと分かる。「應需造之」とあることから、大西家より祝事に際しての依頼を受けて応じ、一点物として製作したのだろう。

釜/鵬雲斎大宗匠好 桐の紋 大西浄心造(大西清右衛門美術館蔵)

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