A Longquan Celadon Funerary Jar 龍泉窯多管青瓷瓶
Northern Song period, 11th century
Height: 13 in. (33 cm)
Width: 7 in. (17.8 cm)
Northern Song period
Carl Kempe collection
Bo Gyllensvard, Chinese Ceramics in the Carl Kempe Collection, Stockholm, 1964, pl. 27
Oriental Ceramics: The World’s Great Collections, vol. 8 (Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm), Tokyo, 1982, pl. 86
Chinese Ceramics in the Carl Kempe Collection, The Museum of Art and Far Eastern Antiquities in Ulricehamn, Ulricehamn, 2002, pl. 250
Zhu Zhanji [Chu Chan-ji] 朱瞻基
Hawk on Branch
Hanging scroll, ink and color on silk
45 1/2 x 23 1/2 in. (115.8 x 59.9 cm)
“Hawks flocking together in lofty groves have unyielding characters. Formerly they were compared to the virtuous in cities…. when at leisure from the ten-thousand affairs of state, I then call for (brush and ink) from the study and paint so as to banish my cares and give lodging to my feelings of loneliness.
Created by the Emperor during the first ten days of the 8th lunar month in Autumn, of the 2nd year of the Xuan….x…….. reign-era and presented to Eunuch Wang Zhong.”
Youshu (“Written by the Emperor”)
An Underglaze-blue Porcelain Dish with Deer Design 青青鹿紋菊花形瓷盤
Late Ming dynasty
Late 16th-early 17th century
Diameter: 8 in. (20.3 cm)
Height: 1.38 in. (3.4 cm)
The small, thinly potted dish was wheel thrown and pressed over a mould to produce a double row of multiple lobes or flutes in the cavetto, the lip rim finished with gentle scallops corresponding to the fluting, the wide flat base enclosed within a low v-shaped slightly inturned foot, the unglazed foot rim with a modicum of grit adhering and with some fritting to the lip rim. The focus of the design is a pair of deer within a loosely executed landscape of vague hillocks and foliage. One deer turns its head back as it moves forward, gazing at the second deer following behind, the bright cobalt blue brushed on in fluid washes, consistent in color throughout, the motifs enhanced with lineament, in places as brief outlines, in others as decorative or descriptive curved or straight comb-like lines. The flutes were each further defined with pencil- thin outlines and each completed with a thick blue stripe down its center. A double line circles the exterior of the foot while a loose scroll circles the foot at the base of the exterior wall. The glaze is clear, smooth and bright.
ASIA WEEK AUTUMN 2023
An Autumn Airing
September 14 – Winter 2023
For Asia Week Autumn 2023, we are pleased to present An Autumn Airing, which is inspired by memories of late summer/early Autumn in Japan when temples and shrines would engage in mushiboshi (drying insects). All manner of art and accoutrement—for example, a 13th century book bag, centuries-old monks clothing, precious paintings, or even wooden storage boxes—would be laid out in the fresh air to dry out moisture, kill mold, and dispatch insects. Currently, temple holdings are often stored in secure facilities off-site but the practice continues with troves returning home for the airing, providing an opportunity for a public viewing of treasures that are otherwise usually out of sight.
One of the highlights is a Longquan Celadon Funerary Jar. Typical of a vessel produced at a Longquan kiln in Zhejiang province, this is a light grey stoneware with greyish-green glaze, and, similar to others of this category of funerary jars, it is of elongated ovoid form ascending in cushion-like tiers, with incised designs and a cap-like cover surmounted by a lotus-bud shaped knob completing the pagoda-like form. The visual similarity to Buddhist pagodas, pagoda finials, or to stone pillars suggests that Buddhist architectural art was an inspiration behind the ceramic funerary vessels. The tubular appendages are signature characteristics, and can vary in number and length, and usually not opening into the interiors of the vessels.
According to the inscriptions on the lids of some of these jars found at burial sites, along with the actual contents sometimes still preserved, they were intended to hold grain for the deceased while the function of the tubular appendages, common to all, is not clearly understood. Since these vessels appeared to be very closely linked to the Yueyao stylistic tradition, it had been assumed that they were products of the Yue kilns until kiln-site materials proved differently. A number of these urns have been discovered with inscriptions dating to the 11th century and a Northern Song date is accepted as their period of production.
To view the exhibition, click here.