Highlights of Boshan Ceramics

By Boshan Colored Glaze Museum

Boshan is one of the important ceramic producing areas in China, which is called "Hometown of Chinese Ceramic and Colored Glaze Art" and "City of Chinese Ceramics and Colored Glaze Cultures".

Eggshell PotteryBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

The history of porcelain production in Boshan can be traced back to the late Neolithic Period. At that time, the ancestors of Boshan had begun to knead soil and mud to make utensils, dig the ground to build kilns, and burn firewood to make pottery in Shima, South Boshan, Yuanquan, Penquan and other places.

In the Song Dynasty, the porcelain production in Boshan reached its peak. The scale kept expanding with more and more newly built firing points, and the most prosperous kilns were located in Beiling and the south of Dajie.

Kilns in the south of Dajie have begun to make products of "raindrop glaze" and "tea dust glaze".

Double Dragons Bottle, Feng Naizao, Li Hongchang, From the collection of: Boshan Colored Glaze Museum
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"Raindrop glaze" is named for the radial round crystals with silver metallic luster within the glaze, which resemble the round ripple when raindrops fall into the water.

Originated in the kilns along the Boshan Dajie during the Northern Song Dynasty, the manufacturing technique was lost in the late Yuan Dynasty. It was not until 1936 that Hou Xianghui, a famous ceramic artist in Boshan, managed to resume raindrop glazed ceramics after years of experiment.

Tea Dust GlazeBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

Tea dust glaze originated in the mid-Tang Dynasty and developed in the late Tang Dynasty. It was named for its fine, tea dust-like flaky crystals. It looks simple but elegant. The dark ones are called "crab shell green" and the light ones are "eel yellow".

Sancai of Song DynastyBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

The texture, shape and decoration of various ceramic products are excellent. Most of the products are bowls, plates, cups, cans, pillows and other daily necessities that have simple and thick shape and are rich in change.

White Glazed BowlBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

There is a circle of scraping glaze in the center of the white glazed bowl, which reflects the common style of folk kiln products in the northern area.

Twisted Ceramic BowlBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

To make a twisted ceramic bowl, knead two or more different colors of porcelain clay together, twist and throw to form it, pour transparent glaze on the surface and then fire. Because of the different ways of twisting clay, the texture changes infinitely. It can twist out wood pattern, bird feather pattern, moire pattern and flowing water pattern, some of them are like old trees twining and twisting, some of them are like hills and mountains rising and falling. There are always ingenious and changeable works produced by this technique.

Ceramic Jar with Powder BarsBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

The glaze color is given priority to black glaze and green glaze, as well as decoration such as engraving ornaments with makeup soil or white ground and black flowers, etc.

Mr. Feng Xianming believes that "black glazed jar with lines, together with a small number of cylinders and bowls, are the most representative products of Boshan kiln. This kind of decoration can be seen in Hebei and Henan kilns, but Boshan kiln has the products with the best quality. The glaze is black and bright, and the vertical powder under the glaze forms straight lines with various arrangement, which is a speciality of Boshan kiln.

Celadon BowlBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

Celadon glaze is the earliest color glaze of Chinese porcelain. It is not purely blue, mostly with yellow, grey or green. The celadon glaze made in Boshan kiln in the Ming Dynasty has a rather uniform and clean color.

In the early Yuan Dynasty, with the development of cities and towns, the number of local residents gradually increased, and glass, coal and iron industries rose one after another, which created better conditions for the development of ceramic industry. Boshan quickly became the ceramic production center of the area.

Four Handled VaseBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

The porcelains of the Yuan Dynasty have some unique shapes, such as this four-handled black vase, which has a single color and a heavy feel. All these were influenced by the social conditions of that time, with continuous wars and slow development of industry and commerce.

In the early Ming Dynasty, the ceramic production in Boshan was in the trough, and was restored and developed after the mid-Ming.

Since the founding of the People's Republic of China, Boshan ceramic production has developed rapidly and kept innovating in terms of glaze color, shape and decoration.

Milky white porcelain, Ivory porcelain, Lu Yu porcelain, gem porcelain, Lu Cui porcelain, High quartz porcelain, Bone china, Synthetic bone ash porcelain are all innovative fine porcelain for daily use.

Ivory Colored Tableware by Qiao XiruBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

This is a new kind of high temperature yellow glaze invented after the War of Liberation in China. The glaze is pure, elegant, light and clean, similar to Ivory color, so it is called "ivory yellow" in Chinese.

Etched Gold TablewareBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

Vase, tea set, tableware and other high-grade fine porcelain decorated with acid gold etching technique have an elegant and magnificent artistic effect.

Our Wills Unite Like a FortressBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

Porcelain carving is an amazing artcraft in Zibo ceramic art which developed from the 1970s. Early techniques were mainly single-line sketching, which was elegant but difficult to show the different gradations of the work. Later, Boshan's ceramic carving artists gradually integrated skills of traditional Chinese painting into the ceramic carving techniques, such as the ingenious use of points, lines, planes as well as black, white and gray. At the same time, they learned from oil painting, printmaking and other artistic forms to create a large number of excellent works.

”Snow Welcomes Spring" Bottle by Wang LaixiaBoshan Colored Glaze Museum

Ceramic industry, as a representative traditional industry of Boshan, is still developing and innovating after thousands of years.

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