Kutani is a Japanese art form that can be seen in dinner ware globally. Ever since the world learned about these beautiful hand-painted bowls, plates, mug and spoons, it came in high-demand. Today, Kutani ware is exported to all countries with enthusiast collecting collections for themselves.
All art differs from one to another depending on the artist. Some paint nature and natural things on the dinner ware while others paint characters. Nature like waves, flowers and landscape are the famous choice for many. On the other hand, some artists prefer painting animals, human figures and cartoon characters.
Speaking of cartoon characters, Kutani ware has a best-seller around the world in the paintings of Doraemon – the cartoon. Since Doraemon has a history of its own in Japan, it was evident that he would make it to the art of Kutani ware.
Who is Doraemon?
Fujiko F. Fujio is the artists behind the famous Doraemon cartoon character. It is a manga series that became a serial back in December 1969. The total number of chapters of Doraemon is 1345 compiled in 45 volumes. The original and first publisher of this famous cartoon is Shogakukan who published in 1970 to 1996.
The Fame of Doraemon
The story of Doraemon is that he is a robotic cat without ears who travels back in time. He travels from the 22nd century to help a little boy named Nobita Nobi. Each episode of the series revolves around their adventures together since Doraemon has more knowledge that he brings from the future.
This series quickly became a favorite and produced a media franchise. In 1973, 1979 and 2005, three different TV animations series were adapted. Moreover, Shin-Ei Animation produced more than forty animated films that included two 3D animated films. All of these forty films were distributed by Toho.
The obvious target market were children but some older generation were also captivated by the creativity of the series. This lead to Doraemon becoming a brand which ended in the creation of merchandise including soundtrack albums, musicals and video games.
Another license was purchased for an English version of the series to be released in North America. This was done through Amazon Kindle in collaboration with Fujiko F. Fujio along with Voyager Japan and AltJapan Co. Ltd. Moreover, this animation series was licensed by Disney for the same purpose. In 2014, Doraemon was released in LUK International in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
Awards and Recognitions
The Doraemon animation series quickly became a hit in most Asian countries while winning numerous awards. In 1973 and 1994, the series also received the Japan Cartoonists Association Award along with the Shogakukan Manga Award in 1982. Additionally, in 1997, Doraemon also bagged the Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize.
By 2012, Doraemon was sold with over 170 million copies worldwide that made it the 7th best-selling manga in history. This is also the highest-grossing media franchises of the all-time in the animation category. This huge success has resulted in Doraemon being viewed as a cultural icon for Japan. This also led to it being the first “animated ambassador” in 2009 as claimed by the Foreign Ministry of Japan.
Legacy and Cultural Impact of Doraemon
The Doraemon series inspired several other notable mangakas including the famous “devil fruits” on One Piece and Rumiko Takahashi of Urusei Yatsura. Nevertheless, no other character or manga could match to Doraemon’s level or popularity.
Doraemon is now considered a cultural icon of Japan and the most famous animated character in the history of manga. Some critics even compare the nobility of Mickey Mouse and Snoopy with Doraemon. A poll was conducted back in 2007 by Oricon that showed the results of Doraemon being the second-strongest manga character in history, the first being Son Goku of Dragon Ball.
Museums and Other Honors
The character is associated with luck and making all wishes come true by Japanese since its inception. He was showcased in both the 2016 Summer Olympics closing ceremony and the 2020 Summer Olympics held in Tokyo. Moreover, in 2002, Doraemon was described as the cuddliest hero in Asia in a special feature of Time magazine in a special issue of Asian Hero.
The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs explained why Doraemon was declared the first-ever animated ambassador. Japan’s aim was to ensure that other countries would understand the uniqueness of Japanese animation and increase their interest in its culture.
A museum was also opened in Kawasaki in 2011 in honor of Fujiko F. Fujio. Needless to say, Doraemon is the star of this museum. The character is used internationally to educate children and add a fun aspect to talk about serious issues.
Doraemon as Kutani Ware Art
Japan prides itself for it unique cultural values and the unique art forms. Kutani ware being the only hand painted dinner ware in the world, it only makes sense to include the cultural icon of Japan in it. The collaboration of Kutani ware with Doraemon is not a surprise.
It is important to note that every piece of the Kutani ware reflects something of Japan, like Mount Fiji, cherry blossoms and the goldfish. These are cultural aspect of Japan that the world uses to recognize the country. Doraemon is also part of Japan’s culture, so it made its way to Kutani ware.
The following links will give access to the world of Kutani ware with Doraemon featured on mugs and plates.
- Take a look at this small dish that features Doraemon relaxing in a garden surrounded by butterflies and flowers under the sun. This dish is quite popular and the best-selling product.
- This yellow dish shows different moods of Doraemon painted over a yellow surface. It is ideal to encourage kids to eat their completed meals on time.
- This colorful dish that features Nobita and his friends along with Doraemon is a must buy! There is no doubt that this is one is for true Doraemon fans.
- If you are looking for a mix of traditional and Doraemon Kutani ware, this should be your choice. The hexagonal pattern dish features Doraemon in an old style but clearly reflects Japanese traditions.
- This red painted plate with a big Doraemon smile is selling like hot cakes! Unlike other plates and dishes, this one is not colorful but is a simpler version. This design is for those Doraemon fans who like to collect for their generations to come.
Best-Selling Kutani Ware
Consider this collaboration between Doraemon and Kutani Ware a reflection of the Japanese culture. People who like to collect the Kutani Ware art, are no doubt in awe of Japanese artistry. This proves that the Doraemon Kutani Ware is in high demand.
Most websites that sell Kutani Ware have a best-selling section. And guess what? You will see that Doraemon makes the top of the list every single time!
So do not wait any longer, grab your favorite pieces of Doraemon Kutani Ware and add them to your collection!
See Doraemon Kutani Wares