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Dogu are from the earliest-dated tradition of pottery manufacture in the world, dating to the prehistoric Jomon period, which began 16,000 years ago.

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KITAMURA Junko, Japan 北村純子. Kitamura Junko grew up in a historical part of Kyoto and was a student of two of Japan’s most prominent modern artists: Suzuki Osamu and Kondo Yutaka. She blends modern visual sensibilities with patterns evocative of Jomon period (10,500–300 BC) pottery and clay from the ancient pottery center of Shigaraki.

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Jomon (Japan) c. 2500 BC - a type of ancient pottery which was made during the Jōmon period in Japan. The term "Jōmon" means "rope-patterned" in Japanese, describing the patterns that are pressed into the clay.

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The power of dogu: ceramic figures from ancient Japan. Animal-faced dogū. Kamikurokoma, Yamanashi prefecture, Japan. 2500–1500 BC. On loan from Tokyo National Museum. Dogu are from the earliest-dated tradition of pottery manufacture in the world, dating to the prehistoric Jomon period, which began 16,000 years ago. Most of the figures in the exhibition are from about 2500 BC to 1000 BC (the Middle and Late Jomon periods) and show the development of the sculptural form over time.

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Small spouted vessel completely lacquered in vermilion excavated from the floor of a dwelling at the Kakinoshima Site, Hokkaido, latter half of the Late Jomon period, photo courtesy of Hakodate City.

The Dogū figures of the Jōmon period of prehistoric Japan. Around 10,000 BCE, a culture and pottery type called Jōmon emerged in Japan, and is among the earliest pottery in the world. The Jomon period, which encompasses a great expanse of time, constitutes Japan’s Neolithic period. Its name is derived from the “cord markings” that characterize the ceramics made during this time. Jomon people were semi-sedentary, living mostly in pit dwellings arranged around central open ...

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