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Incense Burner


Artwork Details

Incense Burner
stoneware with glaze
9 1/16 in x 13 3/16 in x 13 7/16 in (23.02 cm x 33.5 cm x 34.13 cm)
Gift of Domino's Pizza, Inc.

On Display

Not currently on display


Subject Matter:

A stoneware celadon incense burner from the longquan kilns in Zhejiang province. The shape of this incense burner is based on zun (樽) and lian (璉)bronze forms, along with its taotie  (饕餮) animal mask legs, which were adopted by longquan kilns in the twelfth century. Peonies are associated with wealth, imperial splendor, and the erotic appeal of a beautiful woman. This incense burner would be placed infront of an altar for use during rituals.

Longquan is the most representative, widespread, and esteemed ware of the Southern Song dynasty (1127–1279). Production started during the Five Dynasties period (907–960) at the kilns near the market town of Longquan, where in later dynasties much of the ware was collected for shipping. Technological advances, such as the development of a multi-chambered, rising kiln and the use of stacked saggars (protective clay boxes), allowed for increased production in the Southern Song. In Yuan (1279–1368) and Ming (1368–1644) times, the kilns supplied wares to a domestic market as well as to overseas markets in Korea, Japan, and Southeast Asia.

Physical Description:

A cylindrical, everted stoneware vessel with animal mask tripod legs applied to the sides.  The body of the vessel is incised with roundels containing peonies surrounded by silk worm scrolls contained between bands of floral meander.  It is covered in a green celadon glaze. 

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