Tea bowl with slip design of plum blossom

Jizhou warecirca 12th century

Art Gallery of New South Wales

Art Gallery of New South Wales
Sydney, Australia

The flowering plum blossom first appeared in the art of the Song dynasty in the twelfth century and has maintained its popularity as a motif in poetry, painting and the decorative arts to the present day. The emblem of winter, it appears with the peony, lotus and chrysanthemum to symbolise the four seasons. The plum blossom and moon form a striking design on this Jizhou ware teabowl produced in Jiangxi province in response to the local Song dynasty tea cult and its aesthetic preference for drinking pale green tea out of dark glazed bowls. The patronage of local scholar officials inspired Jizhou potters to decorate their ceramics using a variety of techniques. The simple, spontaneous brushwork of this piece is distinct from that of other locales around China. It is a brilliant interpretation of the early association of plum and moon.

'Asian Art', AGNSW Collections, 1994, pg. 194.

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  • Title: Tea bowl with slip design of plum blossom
  • Creator: Jizhou ware
  • Date Created: circa 12th century
  • Location: Jiangxi Province/China
  • Physical Dimensions: 5.0 x 11.1 cm
  • Type: Ceramic
  • Rights: Gift of Graham E. Fraser 1988
  • External Link: https://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/collection/works/519.1988
  • Medium: stoneware with a dark brown glaze and slip painted decoration
  • Signature & Date: Not signed. Not dated.
  • Object Other Titles: Tea bowl with slip design of prunus blossom
  • Artist Country: China