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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. 12 1/2 in. (31.8 cm); D. 8 1/8 in. (20.6 cm)
Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection of Asian Art
The worldwide export of ceramics that marked the Yuan dynasty (1278 - 1367) was temporarily slowed by the warfare that led to the establishment of the Ming dynasty. The official reopening of trade during the Yongle period (1403 - 1424) had an impact on the form and decoration of ceramics produced during the first half of the 15th century. The flattened gourd shape of this bottle, for example, ultimately derives from metalwork and ceramic flasks of Iranian, Syrian, or Turkish origins. The ends of the handles are formed into curvilinear shapes called ruyi after the name of a Chinese scepter. The stylized lotus medallion lightly incised in the center of the bottle is often found as decoration on early 15th-century ceramics. Unlike the more naturalistic Chinese designs, this geometric treatment also reflects renewed interest in the Middle East.
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