'Lai Nam Thong' or 'Bencharong ware'
Bencharong and Lain Nam Thon wares are polychrome porcelain wares made in the city of Jingdezhen (the porcelain capital of China) and richly decorated to Thai tastes with bright enamel glazes. It is thought that Buddhist books and paintings were supplied as references and sent to Guangzhou merchants, who acted as intermediaries to the Chinese potters and decorators for foreign orders. As with Western orders, new, alien ceramic shapes were communicated by maquettes in wood or perhaps metal. While the name Bencharong derives from the sanskrit words ‘pancha’ and ‘ranga’ meaning five colours, Bencharong wares can also be found with as little as three and as many as eight colours.
After the fall of Autthaya to the Burmese in 1767 Lain Nam Thong wares superseded Bencharong wares as the exclusive wares of royalty. While closely related to Bencharong wares, Lain Nam Thon wares are distinguished by their use of gold in either the main pattern or background.
This small 'toh prik' jar would have been used for medicine or cosmetics. The gilt stupa finial is a less common feature that probably reflects Cambodian influence.
Asian Art Dept., AGNSW, December 2015
Octagonal toh prik jar decorated with vertical panels of gilt and red foilage designs
Place where the work was made
Rama II Period 1809 - 1824 → Thailand
early 19th century
porcelain with enamel decoration and gold finial
6.0 x 5.5 cm
Signature & date
Not signed. not dated.
Gift of Mr F. Storch 1984
Not on display
Where the work was made
Referenced in 2 publications
Jackie Menzies, TAASA Review, 'The Nanhai Trade', pg. 4-7, Sydney, Mar 2004, 4-5, 6 (colour illus.), 7.
The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Export Ceramics', Sydney, 2003, 143 (colour illus.).