Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Gallery Text

Chinese ceramic wares made in Song dynasty (960–1279) court taste are esteemed for their refined forms, subtle decoration, and soft, muted glaze colors. Buoyed by national peace, economic prosperity, and the rise of a highly educated civil official class, local ceramics industries throughout China began to thrive and innovate at unprecedented levels.

Kilns seeking to supply household wares to their highly cultured clientele often created pieces that were reminiscent of other precious items. For example, northern Ding wares, with their decorative designs and thin bodies, were often compared to silverwork, while the thick green glazes coating southern Longquan wares brought carved jades to mind. Although natural forms were popular, like those inspired by flower blossoms, government officials, who had attained their positions through long study of ancient texts and history, were especially drawn to ceramics that resembled the bronzes and jades of antiquity. Courtly taste in China would change drastically after the Song, shifting toward brightly decorated blue-and-white porcelains, invented at Jingdezhen in the fourteenth century and manufactured at the same kilns that produced the delicate blue-tinged white wares known as qingbai.

Identification and Creation
Object Number
1956.116
Title
Circular Bowl with Notched Rim and Scrolling Lotus Decor
Classification
Vessels
Work Type
vessel
Date
11th-early 12th century
Places
Creation Place: East Asia, China, Hebei province, Quyang
Period
Song dynasty, Northern Song period, 960-1127
Culture
Chinese
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/203606
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Ding ware: porcelaneous white stoneware with ivory-hued glaze over incised decoration. From the Ding kilns at Quyang, Hebei province.
Dimensions
H. 6.5 x Diam. 22.4 cm (2 9/16 x 8 13/16 in.)
Provenance
Dr. Arnold Knapp, New York (by 1956), bequest; to Fogg Art Museum, 1956.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Bequest of Dr. Arnold Knapp
Accession Year
1956
Object Number
1956.116
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Publication History

Kristin A. Mortimer and William G. Klingelhofer, Harvard University Art Museums: A Guide to the Collections, Harvard University Art Museums and Abbeville Press (Cambridge and New York, 1986), no. 38, p. 40

Exhibition History

Masterworks of East Asian Painting, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 11/03/1995 - 06/09/1996

Plum, Orchid, Chrysanthemum, and Bamboo: Botanical Motifs and Symbols in East Asian Painting, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 07/06/2002 - 01/05/2003

Rocks, Mountains, Landscapes and Gardens: The Essence of East Asian Painting ('04), Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 01/31/2004 - 08/01/2004

A Compelling Legacy: Masterworks of East Asian Painting, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 08/24/2004 - 03/20/2005

Forging the New: East Asian Painting in the Twentieth Century, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 05/03/2005 - 10/16/2005

Downtime, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 04/28/2007 - 04/20/2008

Re-View: S228-230 (Asian rotation: 7) Art of the Fan: China, Korea, Japan, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 11/18/2011 - 05/05/2012

32Q: 2600 East Asian, Japanese, Chinese and Korean, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/16/2014 - 01/13/2020

Subjects and Contexts

Google Art Project

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu