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Wine bottle with Ten Symbols of Longevity design

Korean

Artwork Details

Wine bottle with Ten Symbols of Longevity design
19th century
Korean
porcelain with cobalt pigment under colorless glaze
12 3/16 x 8 1/4 x 8 1/4 in. (30.8 x 20.8 x 20.8 cm)
Gift of Bruce and Inta Hasenkamp and Museum purchase made possible by Elder and Mrs. Sang-Yong Nam
2004/1.281

On Display

Not currently on display

Description

March 28, 2009
After a hiatus due to invasions from Japan and war with Manchu-led China, production of Korean blue-and-white wares began again at the government kilns at Bunweon in 1752. Pear-shaped bottles such as this were made in great numbers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The Chinese decoration appealed to the Neo-Confucian elite. The ten Daoist symbols of longevity—sun, cloud, mountain, rock, water, crane, deer, turtle, pine tree, and mushroom of eternal youth—are painted in bright cobalt around the bulbous form. Notwithstanding the Chinese-inspired motifs, this vessel’s softly painted decoration on a pure porcelain body under a clear glaze exemplifies the balance between informality and dignity that is characteristic of Korean ceramic art.
(Label for UMMA Korean Gallery Opening Rotation, March 2009)

Subject Matter:

Wine bottle with ten Daoist symbols of longevity—sun, cloud, mountain, rock, water, crane, deer, turtle, pine tree, and the mushroom of eternal youth.

Physical Description:

Porcelain wine bottle with ten cobalt pigment depicting Chinese Daoist ten symbols of longevity—sun, cloud, mountain, rock, water, crane, deer, turtle, pine tree, and the mushroom of eternal youth. A blue band rings the foot of the bottle, as well as just below the main register of the body. The ten symbols of longevity design stretches around the bulbous body above, tapering off as the body begins to taper into the tubular neck, culminating in a slightly flared rim.

This bottle was produced in Bunwon-ri, Gwangju-si, Gyeonggi-do. It is decorated on the entire surface with ten longevity symbols, including deer, pine trees, and cranes, rendered in underglaze cobalt blue. Ten longevity symbols were frequently chosen to decorate the stationery, bottles, and jars produced in the late 19th century at kilns in Bunwon-ri. This is a high-quality white porcelain bottle, with well sintered clay and glaze and outstanding cobalt blue colouring.
[Korean Collection, University of Michigan Museum of Art (2014) p.178]

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