Conférence : « Introducing Asian Ceramics: Blue and White », 11 décembre 2012

The Oriental Ceramic Society of London is announcing its first introductory lecture on Asian ceramics:


« Introducing Asian Ceramics: Blue and White »

Tuesday, 11th December 2012, 6.00 to 7.30 pm

at the premises of the Society of Antiquaries, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BE


presented jointly by :


Dr. Stacey Pierson

Senior Lecturer in Chinese Ceramics, History of Art and Archaeology Department, School of Oriental and African Studies, London


Professor Dr. Nicole Coolidge Rousmaniere

Research Director, Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures, and The British Museum


Dr. Melanie Gibson

Director of the Islamic Module, Postgraduate Diploma in Asian Art, School of Oriental and African Studies, London


This three-part lecture will look at the development of blue-and-white ceramics in China, Korea, Japan and the Middle East.


Blue-and-white ceramics were made in Iraq since about the 9th century and cobalt remained a popular colourant for ceramics in the Middle East both on its own or in combination with other colours. These early wares briefly found an echo in China which, however, was not to last.


Blue-and-white porcelain was developed by the Jingdezhen kilns in China during the Mongol Yuan dynasty (1279-1368), in a period of active international trade. In China it became the preferred style of porcelain at the court during the early Ming period (1368-1644), and despite the subsequent successful development of many other colours, retained its high status until modern times.


Chinese blue-and-white immediately proved so popular abroad and was so widely copied that it changed the stylistic development of ceramics almost throughout Asia, and Middle Eastern potters reacted particularly favourably to the new ware that they themselves had originally inspired.


Porcelain production began in Korea by the 14th century but surprisingly in Japan only by the beginning of the 17th century. Interestingly cobalt blue decoration on porcelain in Korea only began to flourish as a preferred design pattern in the second half of the Joseon period (1392-1897), while in Japan from the very beginning in the 1610s (early Edo period, 1615-1868) underglaze cobalt blue designs were favoured on porcelain. The reasons for these design choices are multiple and fundamentally have to do with the meaning and use porcelain in the various periods.


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