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Asian art

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Lotus pond bowl

14th century


Jingdezhen ware



The bowl is modelled in the form of an oval-shaped pond with fluted sides and everted rim containing four modelled children playing amongst stemmed lotus and two fish. It is decorated with splashed brown iron spots and covered with a 'qingbai' glaze. The flat base is unglazed.

Apart from the vividness of modelled children playing amongst lotus fish, worth noting is the decoration of the splashed brown iron spots. One aspect of the decorative innovations of the Yuan potters lay in the tentative experiments with painted underglaze decoration. The 'qingbai' wares with iron oxide seemingly randomly spotted and splashed over the vessels are the earliest experiments in underglazed decoration. However, among examples of the same type this piece may display the least random use of iron spotting, since each boy's hair is carefully indicated.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, June 1999.


Other Titles

Qingbai ware lotus pond bowl

Yingqing ware lotus pond bowl

Place where the work was made

Jingdezhen Jiangxi Province China


14th century

Media category


Materials used

porcelain decorated with splashed brown iron spots and covered with a 'qingbai' glaze


4.0 x 10.5 cm

Signature & date

Not signed. Not dated.


Edward and Goldie Sternberg Chinese Art Purchase Fund 1999

Accession number


Artist information

Jingdezhen ware

Works in the collection



Where the work was made

Shown in 4 exhibitions

Exhibition history

Referenced in 6 publications


Joanna Capon, Art and Australia (Vol. 41, No. 4), 'Goldie Sternberg. Benefactor', pg. 618-620, Sydney, Jun 2004-Aug 2004, 618, 619 (colour illus.), 620.

John Guy, Oriental trade ceramics in southeast Asia, 10th to 16th century: selected from Australian collections, including the Art Gallery of South Australia and the Bodor Collection, Melbourne, 1980, 42, (illus.) 43. plate no. 36

John Guy, Oriental trade ceramics in South-East Asia: Ninth to sixteenth centuries, Singapore, 1986, 88, 90 (colour illus.). no. 43

Jackie Menzies, Look, 'Asian Favourites', pg. 24-27, Sydney, Sep 2003, 27 (colour illus.).

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Export Ceramics', Sydney, 2003, 135 (colour illus.).

Jackie Menzies, TAASA Review, In the Public Domain: Trade Ceramics in the AGNSW", Sydney, Jun 2013, 24 (colour illus.).