Yabu Meizan, Satsuma Tea Cup and Saucer with Cherry Blossoms and Peony

Artist: Yabu Meizan (1853-1934)
Title: Satsuma Tea Cup and Saucer with Cherry Blossoms and Peony
Date: Early 20th century
Dimensions: Cup (W) 9.6 (D) 7.1 (H) 4.5 cm  Saucer: (W) 12.7 (D) 12.7 (H) 1.2 cm

Original Japanese antique.
A bird and flower scene painted on a Western-style teacup and saucer. Signed on the base in a gilt square 'Yabu Meizan'. 

An idyllic composition of spring fauna and flora. A Japanese sakura tree blooms throughout the piece, with the anthers of its flowers elegantly gilded. Red peonies occupy the lower halves of the design and stand in deeper hues to the sakura. On the teacup, a Japanese jaybird is poised on the cherry trunk. The motif is echoed on the saucer, where a sparrow flies towards the blossoming tree. Both birds have been rendered in exacting detail, with Meizan’s extensive use of gilding creating a feeling of spring bliss.

Yabu Meizan (1853 - 1934)

Yabu Meizan was considered to be one of the greatest ceramic artists of Japan during the 19th-20th century. He was born in Osaka in 1853 and studied painting techniques on ceramics in Tokyo. He returned to Osaka and established his workshop in 1880. He created a new form of intricate artwork characterised by detailed landscapes and decorative motifs. The early artworks were so detailed that one would need the aide of a magnification glass to appreciate the fine miniature paintwork. During the 20th century, he adapted his work to appeal to a wider audience through simplification of designs in keeping with the fashion of the period, maintaining the attention to detail throughout.

More Information
ArtistYabu Meizan (1853 - 1934)
SizeCup (W) 9.6 (D) 7.1 (H) 4.5 cm Saucer: (W) 12.7 (D) 12.7 (H) 1.2 cm
Condition ReportWear consistent with age and use. Minor regilding on by saucer depression.
SubjectAnimals & Birds, Flowers & Botanical
Product Dateearly 20th century