This set of plates were produced in the Meiji era. The dark, deep blue color development (hashoku) in Sometsuke is indicative of the era in which the plates were made. Plates like these were not made in a renowned studio, whose works were reserved for those in the imperial family, the nobility, and other members of the upper class. Rather, plates like these were produced in mass quantity for all to use in their everyday lives. There is a trove of treasures that lie hidden in this category. Although these were made for “commoners” and were not regarded on the same plane as a work that would come out of a master artisan’s studio, they have the same latent potential to be works of immense beauty. The masterful brush stroke that is used to hand-paint one carp over the entire surface of the plate produces a dynamic effect; it is as if the carp is about to jump out of the plate in any minute. This “Carp with an Attitude” is playful yet elegant, quiet but simultaneously teeming with life. It sparks the imagination as one plans to curate a table setting, with undiscovered possibilities in combination with other plates and bowls, or, alternatively, mounting it on the wall as a work of art. Works like these deserve our wildest imagination.