Robert Yellin's Japanese Pottery Blog

Greetings from Kyoto, We've just moved our gallery into a magnificent old Sukiya style home located very near the Silver Pavilion; a stunning area and setting for the inspired ceramic art we share with the world. Please visit us if ever in Kyoto or online at and

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Fake Kakurezaki.......oh my!

So, a potter becomes a star here in Japan and thus many want to cash in, especially unscrupulous potters, of which there a few around. On the Net here I came across this guinomi that the seller says is made by the ever-popular Bizen potter Kakurezaki Ryuichi; it's not, it's a fake, Now in the Orient copying goes back centuries and many fakes are so good they are taken for the real thing, especially for paintings and scrolls. I've come across fake pots of Rosanjin, Kenzan, Kato Tokuro, Arakawa Toyozo, Kaneshige Toyo, Kondo Yuzo, Old Bizen, etc...the list goes on and on. Recently at a dealers auction I saw a Harada Shuroku and then all those 'Ko-Bizen' pots. How can one tell? Well, first is form, then firing, then the mark-signature. This Kakurezaki is off on all three points, the foot-kodai is too contrived and the mark is sloppy at best. Of course these forgers are going at smaller works such as guinomi for Kakurezaki and Harada as the larger works are too much effort and there's no way to be able to copy them just so. Quite often a signed box is also provided, not so here though as Kakurezaki's calligrpahy is also so unique. So much so that hardly anyone can read it! Anyway, beware if something looks too good to be true.......this piece was 5,000 yen. You can find many examples of Kakurezaki works in our archives at along with examples of his mark for pots.


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