Barbara Brown on sat 16 aug 03
Well, today was the big day. Went to San Francisco Moscone Center for
the Antique Road Show.My ticket time was 2:00, got in line at 1:30 got
to the front of the line at 2:15. A volunteer looks at your pieces and
takes you to the line for the appropriate table.
I had 2 Japanese plates so was taken to the line for the pottery table.
There were 4 people ahead of me. There were 8 appraisers behind the
table helping people. I decided I wanted David Rago to look at my
pottery so waited until he was free. He looked at the 2 plates (Hamada
and Kawai ((I think))), said they were Japanese ceramics from the 60's
and that he didn't know too much about them and asked me what I knew.
I told them the story of the plates.
An American embassy employee in Tokyo in the 60's collected pottery, he
returned to Calif and died in the 90's,, the 3 plates were in a
cardboard box,along with many other boxes from his estate at an auction
house along with several other estates. I paid $35 for the box.
I thought they were made by Hamada, Kawai and Shimoaka.
David Rago said it is impossible to prove it is a Hamada without the
wooden box with his name on it. If it was Hamada and had the wooden
box, it would be worth $15,000 to $20,000.
David Rago wrote a book "Collecting Modern" which has some Hamada and
Voulkos ceramics in it.
I came home, went on the internet to abebooks.com and found 9 copies of
Collecting Modern from $8.75-$50. I ordered the $8,75 copy.
So now is 8 copies from $8.99-$50
David then suggested I take the plates to the Asian Art table to see
what they say.
I took all 3 plates out at the Asian table and the woman appraiser
appraised them at $400 each. (She did pick up the Shimoaka and read him
mark and told me who he was.)
I did better than the woman in front of me. She had a small blue and
white Japanese vase and the appraiser told her that it was worth $10.
2 years ago I took the Hamada and Shimoaka plates to Japantown San
Francisco to the Mashiko shop and the owner appraised the Hamada at
$2600 and the Shimoaka at $1800 (telling me it would be worth more after
he died) So who knows what they are worth .
It was fun and I am glad I went.
Barbara Brown phone/fax 408-736-3889
1225 Manzano Way,Sunnyvale,Ca. 94089
Lee Love on sun 17 aug 03
----- Original Message -----
From: "Barbara Brown"
> David Rago
> 2 years ago I took the Hamada and Shimoaka plates to Japantown San
> Francisco to the Mashiko shop and the owner appraised the Hamada at
> $2600 and the Shimoaka at $1800 (telling me it would be worth more after
> he died) So who knows what they are worth .
The guy at the Mashiko Shop is probably a better bet. Rago's estimate
seems high. You'd have to be talking about one of the largest sized
platters. Also, sometimes Shimaoka's work fetches higher prices than
Hamada's. Depends upon the work. Hamada didn't always "kill his runts."
Shinsaku Hamada (Shoji Hamada's son), verifies and signs boxes. I
believe he charges a fee. Shimaoka will verify work, order and sign
boxes. He uses the best box maker in town, so a box could cost around
$100.00 or more. If you are really concerned about the monetary worth of
these pieces, I would advise getting boxes for them.
If you send good photos including a close up of the stamp on the
pot, along with a story about how it came into your possession, Shimaoka
might help you get a box for the work. You have to send exact mesurements
I don't know about Kawaii's work, but if you do some research,
you might find a relative or an apprentice of his that does the same
Lee In Mashiko