A RARE SMALL JAPANESE ARITA PORCELAIN 'VOC' PLATE
Late 17th century
The centre decorated with the VOC monogram surrounded by ho-oh birds and pomegranate, the rim with floral panels in the Wanli-style.
Diam. 22 cm
This smaller than usual dish is painted in underglaze blue with the VOC (Vereenigde Oost Indische Compagnie) monogram in the centre, surrounded by two “ho-ho” birds and the border with alternating panels of pomegranates and bamboo. The distinctive blue and white plates with the VOC monogram, in the popular Chinese Wanli “Kraak” style were produced in Arita, Japan between 1660 and 1680, during the internal wars in China. The porcelain production at Arita however never was very profitable for the Dutch and when the Qing Dynasty had established itself in China the Dutch and others looked for porcelain in China again.
These Arita plates with the VOC monogram for use by Officers of the Company, were ordered by the VOC only once or twice in the early eighties of the 17th century and no more after that period.