How to use database

If you are looking for the meaning of the marking on your favorite Kutani piece, at first you should have a quick look on the following documents.

Once you have understood how kutani marking works, you may want to know more and find out if your marking already exists in the Kutani database and if history of the potter or the kiln is available.
If you do not know anything, but at least can hold the marking in the proper direction (not upside down!) or if you can recognize one of the kanji, you can select "search by type of marking". You will then get a list of all corresponding marking available in the database. It can be quite long for the list "by kanji marking".

If you already know the name of the potter, the kiln or the trading shop, you can select "search by potter, kiln/trading". You will then get the list of all marking available in the database for the requested name. This is interesting to check various marking of the same potter or kiln.

Conclusion, the database provides several search capabilities by:

  • Potter/painter Family Name
  • Potter/painter Pen Name:
  • kiln/trading
  • type of marking
  • calligraphist
  • Kanji

The search by Kanji has a particular capability. Just select few kanji (one is generally enough) you can recognize and go for search. The database will give you all the marking which contain the selected Kanji. It’s very powerful but you have to select kanji which are not generic such 九, 谷, 製, 造 otherwise you may just get most of the database.