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Chinese Bronzes of the Shang and Zhou Periods
Han Dynasty Bronzes
Early Chinese Ceramics
Sculpture from Tombs
Chinese Buddhist Sculpture
Tang and Liao Dynasty Metalwork
Ceramics of the Song and Jin Periods
Porcelains of the Yuan and Early Ming Periods
Imperial Chinese Ceramics of the 15th Century
Ceramics of the Late Ming Period
Qing Dynasty Porcelain
Landscape Painting in China
Jade and Lacquer in China
China, Jiangxi Province; Ming period (1368-1644), early 15th century (probably Yongle era, 1403 - 1424)
Porcelain with incised design under glaze
H. 13 in. (33 cm)
Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection of Asian Art
This pear-shaped ewer, which derives its shape from Middle Eastern metalwork, would once have had a small lid. The body, spout, and handle of the ewer are decorated with a peony spray that has been lightly incised under the glaze. The innovative combination of foreign shapes with Chinese designs suggests the two-way influences of the Chinese ceramic trade from the 14th to the 15th centuries. Since export ceramics produced during the Yuan dynasty (1278 - 1367) had catered specifically to foreign tastes, it is often possible to determine whether a particular piece was made for the domestic or export market. During the first half of the 15th century, however, foreign forms were also used domestically, and the large number of new shapes that appear during this period suggest a taste for exotic forms.
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