Cer, Korea, porcelain fragment, Choson period
Fragment of bowl with bright white porcelain body and thick wall. Two Chinese characters, each approximately 20mm square written on exterior in underglaze cobalt blue. These are 'pok' meaning happiness and 'su' meaning long life. The cobalt blue has fluxed a little. Glaze has blueish tinge, especially where it has pooled on theexterior rim. Footring glazed. Kiln material adhered to the footring and base of the bowl. Edges show clean breaks.
Simple glazed ceramics with refined shapes were popular in Korea during the Choson period (1392-1910). Cobalt blue was used to decorate some of these ceramics. This pigment had to be imported from China, which made it expensive. As a result, its use was sometimes banned as it represented an extravagance at odds with the austerity of the Confucian values that held sway in the Choson period. Generally, blue and white ceramics were used in households of the upper echelons of society: at court and among the literati. Two characters have been painted onto the exterior surface of this bowl in cobalt blue. These are 'pok' meaning happiness and 'su' meaning long life.
Given by Sheila E. Hoey Middleton
Location: In Storage