Many celadon ceramics, such as these two miniature pots, have been repaired with gold lacquer. Termed <em>kintsugi </em>(literally meaning “gold joinery”) in Japanese, this restoration method highlights broken parts with glittering gold mixed with lacquer. Initiated in 15th-century Japan, the technique follows a popular aesthetic concept called <em>wabi-sabi, </em>which finds beauty in imperfect things. Goryeo celadons were considered rare treasures among early 20th-century Japanese collectors; thus, their broken condition is brilliantly highlighted in gold lacquer, as seen here in the repaired spouts, handle, and lid.

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  • Title: Melon-shaped Wine Ewer
  • Date Created: 1100s-1200s
  • Physical Dimensions: Outer diameter: 6.7 cm (2 5/8 in.); height with lid: 9 cm (3 9/16 in.)
  • Provenance: (Dr. A. I. Ludlow [1875-1961], Cleveland, OH, sold to John L. Severance), John L. Severance [1863-1936], Cleveland, OH, given to the Cleveland Museum of Art, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • Type: Ceramic
  • Rights: CC0
  • External Link: https://clevelandart.org/art/1928.173
  • Medium: celadon
  • Original Title: 청자 참외모양 주전자 (靑磁瓜形注子)
  • Fun Fact: This miniature wine pot was buried in a tomb for the soul of the deceased.
  • Department: Korean Art
  • Culture: Korea, Goryeo period (918-1392)
  • Credit Line: Gift of John L. Severance
  • Collection: Korean Art
  • Accession Number: 1928.173

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