In 2014, Imaizumi Imaemon XIV received the ultimate distinction as the youngest artist in Japan to be designated a Living National Treasure at the age of 51. Iro-Nabeshima, a polychrome, enamel painted porcelain, was developed during the Edo period (1615–1868) under the support of the Nabeshima domain in current-day Saga prefecture. Highly praised for the meticulous enamel designs with both Asian and Western motifs, Nabeshima ware has been one of the most celebrated porcelains in Japan and abroad. Imaizumi Imaemon became the 14th-generation head of this lineage after studying traditional metalwork in college and working in the product design industry. Among the artist’s signature techniques are sumi-hajiki, a dyeing process that takes advantage of the repellent nature of sumi ink by creating patterns on white porcelain prior to firing. Imaizumi’s personality emerges in the combination of both classical and modern motifs. In 2009, he received the Medal with Purple Ribbon from the Emperor of Japan.
Selected Public Collections
The British Museum | London, United Kingdom
The Kyushu Ceramic Museum | Saga, Japan
The National Museum of Modern Art | Tokyo, Japan
The Museum of Ceramic Art | Hyogo, Japan
The Auckland Museum | Auckland, New Zealand