Black & White: Chinese Ceramics from the 10th-14th Centuries

December 18, 2004 – August 1, 2010

Freer Gallery of Art
Jefferson Drive and 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC

Gallery 18 Floor Plan

This exhibition of 43 objects -- mostly tablewares, wine jars, and vases, ranging from everyday goods to those fit for an emperor -- showcases the variety of glossy black-glazed wares, brilliant white porcelains, and eye-catching combinations of both colors on single vessels created during the Song (960-1279) and Yuan (1279-1368) dynasties. These striking works (including notable Ding, Cizhou, Jian, and Jizhou wares from the Freer's collection) were produced as a result of important developments in Chinese ceramic technology, including the use of streaked dark glazes and different modes of decoration. Objects on view include a rare ceramic Cizhou pillow bearing the exact date of production (1063) and a different pattern on each face; a 13th- to 14th-century incense burner with a marble effect; and a Jian ware bowl with a glaze patterned by "oil spots" (unplanned effects of the iron-laden glaze).