Skip to contentSkip to navigation
Become a Member
Explore today's schedule
Visit MMFA for free by becoming a Member
Learn more
Back
Currently shown

Tea Caddy (natsume)

Location

JAPAN

Era

Edo period (1615-1868)

Title

Tea Caddy (natsume)

Date

About 1800-1850

Materials

Maki-e lacquer on wood

Dimensions

10 cm (h.), 6.8 cm (diam.)

Credits

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Neil B. Ivory, inv. 1983.Ee.1a-b

Collection

Archeology and World Cultures

During the Edo period, highly stylized motifs were common on lacquerware. Symbolic meaning took precedence over visual accuracy, and those familiar with the visual codes fully appreciated the beauty of these objects. The plovers (chidori) on this tea caddy are stylized nearly to the point of abstraction, enhancing the densely crowded flock. The migratory shorebird symbolizes perseverance and the ability to overcome obstacles, and is thus associated with the Samurai class.

Add a touch of culture to your inbox
Subscribe to the Museum newsletter

Bourgie Hall Newsletter sign up

This website uses cookies in order to optimize your browsing experience and for promotional purposes. To learn more, please see our policy on the protection of personal Iinformation