A Fine and Rare Yulingting Black-Glazed Tea Bowl

Southern Song dynasty (1127-1279)
Yulingting kilns, Fujian Province, China.
H: 4.5cm D: 11cm

A finely potted Yulingting tea bowl of conical form, covered overall in a black glaze, where the glaze has run thin around the rim the glaze has turned to a light brown. The interior is delicately decorated with evenly spaced four characters ‘ shou, shan, fu, hai’ or ‘Mountains of longevity and seas of fortune”, in quatrefoil cartouches in the cardinal directions, the remaining space is filled with long silver streaks. The footrim is left unglazed exposing the clay body.

The kilns site were situated in the Wuyi mountain, Fujian province, and were in direct competition with the successful Jian ware kilns also located in Fujian province. To differentiate their wares from the Jian ware kilns, the potters at the Yulingting kiln sites explored new techniques to create unique and ingenious decorative features such as overlay painting with gold and silver paint which proved to be popular for drinking green tea.

– Dr. Nakao Manzo (d. 30th July 1936), collection, number 273.
– Nakao Reiko Collection, number 273.
– Iyeshiro Hiroshi Collection.
– Exhibited at Kyoto National Museum, July 20th 1978, number G2987, certified by Mr Hayashi-ya Tatsusaburou, Head of Kyoto National Museum.
– Uragami Sokyu-do, Tokyo, Japan.
– Private Japanese Collection.

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