Why is it that art has to be old to be valued? Anthologies and studies of ancient Japanese ceramics have been published to exhaustion, but the contemporary masterpieces are often all but ignored. In the present book, however, a wide-ranging collection of modern Japanese porcelain pieces, originally assembled for a 1979 exhibition at the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, have been gathered together in one finely crafted volume. These enameled porcelains, chosen the works of fourteen contemporary artists, are presented in impressive, full-colour photographs. Some of the pieces are strikingly modern in design; others are traditional and somehow familiar. All are exquisite representations of the best of Japan's contemporary porcelain. In contrast with the popular folk-art movement of the last several decades, which emphasizes the practical uses of its pottery, these artists concentrate on aesthetics: the pieces are meant to be viewed, appreciated as works of art. Tsaburo Yoneda's color photographs, works of art in themselves, fully reveal the beauty of these porcelains. An informative introduction by Mitsuhiko Hasebe, a prominent ceramics specialist, outlines the origins of Japanese porcelain, the development of major porcelain kilns producing Imari, Nabeshima, Kutani, and Kyo wares, and the continuing tradition into the twentieth century. Each of the 137 masterpieces is illustrated in full color and accompanied by detailed captions by some of Japan's leading authorities in the field. Perhaps most important to pottery enthusiasts, an extensive glossary of ceramics terms and thorough biographical information on the artists make this an invaluable reference tool. Whatever the background and interests of the reader, this book is truly a visual experience to be valued by connoisseur and layman alike.