Large Chinese Neolithic Machang Phase Painted Pottery Jar (c. 2300 - 2000 BC)
This large and impressive pottery jar was made over 4,000 years ago during the Machang Phase (c. 2300 - 2000 BC) of the Majiayao culture, also known as the Gansu-Yangshao culture, from present day Gansu or Qinghai province. It is made from a relatively highly-fired pale reddish-brown pottery, the surface colour of which varies in places due to uneven conditions during firing in the Neolithic kiln. The jar has a fairly small flat base, very wide body with two sturdy loop handles on opposing sides, a narrow neck and flared mouth. The decorative pattern, applied on top of the smooth burnished surface with black and purple fired-on mineral-based pigments, features four roundels containing geometric patterns.
Height 36 cm (14 inches), diameter 37 cm (14.5 inches). For such a large pottery jar of over 4,000 years old, condition is exceptional; there is, of course some surface wear and loss of pigment, but the only actual damage is to the vulnerable flared edge of the rim.
This from a private American collection; we have a photocopy document suggesting it was bought from Arch Angel Antiques in Hong Kong in 1989.
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