Yabu Meizan, Satsuma Plate with Maple Tree, early 20th century


Artist: Yabu Meizan (1853–1934)
Title: Satsuma Plate with Maple Tree
Date: Early 20th century
Dimensions: (D) 18.3 (H) 2.5 cm

Original Japanese antique.

A small plate decorated with a freely drawn maple tree. Signed on the base in a gilt square 'Yabu Meizan'.


This particularly favourite motif of Yabu Meizan is redolent with autumnal warmth. The burnt umber of the trunk is enlivened by the fine tracing in gold leaf along the cracks and creases of the bark, whilst the gilded veins of the maple leaves create an amber glow representative of Meizan’s work of this subject. A gradual shift in season is suggested by the greener leaves yet unturned, as well as those in the process of transitioning with their paler, golden hues.

Yabu Meizan

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
Dimensions(D) 18.3 (H) 2.5 cm
Condition ReportWear consistent with age and use.
SubjectFlowers & Botanical
Product Dateearly 20th century