Tofukuji Pot?

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Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Thu Jul 22, 2010 12:47 am

I posted this on another forum but think I might get response here.

I've only been into bonsai for a year now but frequent the few bonsai nurseries in the bay area. Last week I picked up some used pots with chop marks. When I got home I asked my wife to read the marks (she's Japanese). She doesn't know anything about bonsai so most made absolutely no sense but one she recognized as a Temple, Tokufuji. She said it was probably an item from the gift shop or something.

Well, I did a little research and Tokufuji is a temple but this pot did not come from there. It has the same mark as Heian Tofukuji the Master pot maker. I know that he is known for his glazes and this is not a glazed pot but I am happy with my find nonetheless. You can see how much I paid for it in one of the pics.

Do you think this is the real thing or a fake? I did read that there were fakes out there.





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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Thu Jul 22, 2010 12:52 am

This one also reads Tofukuji but is spelled Toufukuji. Are they different makers? Both Chop Marks were located here:
http://bonsaipotplaza.com/

Only the first one is located on the Tokoname Makers website:

http://www.tokoname.or.jp/bonsai/catalog/maker-e.htm




Thanks,

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:52 am

According people on another site, it's most likely a pot fired in the same kiln but not made by Tofukuji himself. This makes sense. It does not look like anything he made. I got some great pots though.

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Sat Jul 24, 2010 7:02 pm

I discovered that the second one is more than likely the real thing. Here is a yahoo auction in Japan selling the same pot for a whole lot more than I paid.

http://page8.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/h138993319


Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:01 pm

Rich.

Wow, what a find. I think you hit the jackpot.

You live in an area where there are plenty of Japanese-Americans involved in bonsai that could have bought those pots in Japan years ago and brought them back to the USA. I can't imagine Tofukuji pots being imported and sold in a shop or nursery, but rather part of someone's personal collection. Go back to the shop and ask some questions - are they selling off some of grandpa's old junk? I don't know if anyone could tell you if they are real of fake here. I'd try to show it to one of the Japanese masters at a convention and see what they say, someone like Kunio Kobayashi. If they were mine they'd be on a high shelf and I'd treat them as the real deal until I found out otherwise.

A used Tofukuji pot for 3.50... I think I'm going to throw up. What was the name of this nursery? tongue

Russell

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  jrodriguez on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:27 pm

Rich,

Although Tofukuji is mostly known for his glazed pots, he did make unglazed ones too. In the recent Miyabi Publication, Shohin Bonsai and Antique Pots, several unglazed Tofukuji pieces are featured.

Congratulations on your excellent find. Also, if you wish to corroborate this info, have your wife place these pictures in several of the japanese bonsai forums. You might even get a few offers!!!

Kind regards,
Jose

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jul 28, 2010 2:35 pm

Rich,

Have you seen this?

http://samedge.wordpress.com/category/bonsai-pots/

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:17 pm

Thanks for the reply Russell. I have seen that website. They ave great info. I've thought about emailing them some pics of my pots to see what they think.

The owner of the nursery said they got the pots from an old timer who past away and his wife sold them to the nursery along with his trees. They are selling them really cheap. Of the ten pots I bought, six are Tokoname (and pretty old) and two might be Tokufuji, and the other two are porcelain with a chop mark but I have not been able to identify them. I did not pay more than $20 dollars for any given pot. The cheapest was 50 cents for the Tokufuji round one in the pic above.

I have only been doing bonsai for a year, so I didn't know much about pots until this find. My wife is Japanese and helped me identify the makers.

If anybody has any information on how to authenticate these pots, I would appreciate it greatly.

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:30 pm

Rich415 wrote:I did not pay more than $20 dollars for any given pot. The cheapest was 50 cents for the Tokufuji round one in the pic above.

Are you trying to kill me? Get your ass in gear and buy every pot they have! Even if some turn out to be junk you're waaaaaaaaay ahead of the game.

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:37 pm

Jose- It took my wife a week to agree to help me research. She thinks I'm crazy. But when she saw the price for a Tokufuji pot, her jaw hit the floor. Dollar signs appeared in her eyes and she looked a little crazy.

I might be able to talk her into helping me again. So long as she promises not to sell them while I'm at work.


Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:44 pm

Russell,

I went through just about every pot they have. I even asked if they had any in back. The owner looked at me strange and said, "Yeah but their not cleaned up yet." I dragged my wife with me to read the chop marks. There are still might be a few Tokoname pots there, or were last week. There weren't any with the Tokufuji mark though. I managed to get both those by accident on my first trip.

I'm guessing that the former owner went to Kyoto, where Tofukuji was located, and bought a couple pots back in the 60' or 70's but only picked up a couple small ones.

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:48 pm

Here's a link to the other thread I started on a another forum. I posted pics of some other pots I picked up.

http://bonsainut.com/forums/showthread.php?t=4175

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  biglou13 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:13 pm

thanks

for post and link

learned alot

ive recently started researching chops from recent "find" and looking for more resources to chops

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:38 pm

Reading signatures is one thing, and reading chops is something else. I've not had much luck with "non-bonsai people" Japanese reading chops on pots. As a matter of fact, I showed a 30 - 40 year old Tokoname pot to a Japanese -American bonsai master last January, and even though the chop is very clear he could not tell me who it was. I also posted it here (page 2) and got no replies.

Rich, I know I'm not the only one here that would love to see pictures of your other finds.

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  biglou13 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:55 pm

i've been saying to myself why doesn't some one put together or work on a more comprehensive chop database better than what the following links supply.

http://www.bonsaipotplaza.com/
http://tokoname.or.jp/bonsai/catalog/maker-e.htm


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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:29 pm

Russell,

My wife couldn't understand the chops either but sometimes she could decipher enough to give me a lead. Like in the case of the Tofukuji pot. She was a real help in authenticating the pots using the websites posted above by Lou. The first one she identified was by Masuo Matsushita because it was in Naka's Bonsai Techniques 2.

I'll post some pics of the other pots later today.


Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:34 pm

Here are some of the other pots I picked up from the used lot.

Matsushita, Masuo


Sankyou ( I have two from this maker. The other is a simple rectangle tray)


Mizukami, Shinji


Kaiyou


Unknown

Same unknown maker


Different unknown maker


Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jul 28, 2010 11:29 pm

Nice work Rich!

The first pot and the last pot are especially beautiful. By "unknown" do you mean that they aren't marked or that you can't find the chop on either of those sites? As good as they are, they're very limited. I'd like to see a picture from the top looking into that last pot as well as one of the bottom. I'm thinking that it may not even be Japanese, but I need to see more. I will say that my heart skipped a beat or two when I got to it.

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:16 am

Russell,

Both pots have marks but I cannot identify them yet. Un fortunately, both are very chipped up. I couldn't resist buying them because the larger one was $10 and the smaller one $4.

Here's the last one:


And the second to last:



Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Thu Jul 29, 2010 3:15 am

That 2nd to the last looks mass produced, something like that "22" is never a good thing. I wonder about that last one. I don't recognize the mark, and the feet are very small for an old Japanese pot. I think it is old Chinese, the glaze has a namako look to it. Don't let the chips worry you. I still want to see the whole inside and bottom.

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Thu Jul 29, 2010 3:26 am

The other little glazed accent pot is the same as the one with the 22 but without a number. Al Keppler posted a pic of a pot by the same maker on Bonsainut. Both of mine and his are porcelain pots. It may be massed produced but their really nice pots.

The other one is very heavy. The glaze is amazing. I read that weight might tell you if it is chinese or japanese. I have no real clue though. I'll get a pic tomorrow of the inside. I didn't take one yet.

Rich

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  jrodriguez on Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:13 pm

Rich,

The last one is definitely not Chinese. Namako of Hai Gwa (Sea cucumber/Melon) glaze of chinese origin is much darker in appearance.

Great pot though!!!

Kind Regards,

Jose Luis

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Fri Jul 30, 2010 1:25 pm

Thanks Jose Luis.

I'm glad you said that. My memory was that Namako was darker too, but it was the closest thing I could come up with! All of the other antique Chinese pots I saw in Japan were much paler blue and green. Okay, so now we're back to Japanese. I'll look through some old Tokoname catalogs and see if I can find anything like it, but I bet its not Tokoname.

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Rich415 on Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:16 pm

Here is a pic of the insideand a closer pic of the glaze.

I appreciate all of your help and interest.

Rich



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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

Post  Russell Coker on Sat Jul 31, 2010 2:27 pm

This is the chop on the pot? Just want to double-check because the clay doesn't look the same.

Rich415 wrote:

R

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Re: Tofukuji Pot?

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