Fine Chinese Song Dynasty Qingbai Porcelain Bowl in Kiln Saggar
A rare opportunity to acquire a Northern Song Dynasty (AD 960 - 1127) kiln saggar still containing its Qingbai porcelain bowl, excavated from a kiln site in the Jingdezhen area of Jiangxi province.
Northern Song Dynasty Qingbai porcelain was fired individually in saggars (the fireproof clay case) that were stacked on top of each other in the kiln. Firing in kilns was then, of course, not the exact science that it is now, with today's use of electric and gas-fired kilns. If the temperature became too hot the porcelain items could warp and sag, the glaze may run or even a stack of saggars could shift and possibly collapse, resulting in the porcelain items becoming fused to the saggar in which they were being fired.
These items are invaluable for research purposes as they show us how Song Dynasty ceramics were fired, not only simply placing each item in its saggar, but supporting it within the saggar on a variety of pads. Sometimes porcelain with designs hitherto unknown are also seen.
The appeal of such items is not only to the academically minded, but also to anyone who appreciates the artistic and decorative nature of these wonderful items.
This saggar contains a fine quality bowl with a very translucent body. It is coated in a pale blue qingbai glaze of good colour. During firing the bowl or stack of saggars must have shifted causing the bowl to come into contact with the wall of its saggar where the glaze fused the two together. In addition, a build-up of ash glaze has run from outside the saggar down its inner surface and into the bowl. On the underside of the saggar are also the remains of the rim of a second Qingbai bowl. Note also the ash glaze around the outer wall of the saggar.
Diameter of saggar 14.5 cm, diameter of bowl 11.5 cm.
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