Ceramics in Mainland Southeast Asia:
Collections in the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

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Jar with applied, stamped, and combed decoration

  • Unglazed stoneware with drips of kiln debris
  • 27.2 x 21 cm
  • Sawankhalok ware
  • 14th-15th century, Ayutthaya period
  • Origin: Ban Ko Noi kilns, Si Satchanalai, Sukhothai province, North-central Thailand
  • Gift of Osborne and Gratia Hauge, and Victor and Takako Hauge
  • S2005.241

Description

Baluster-shaped jar with tall cylindrical neck, flaring flanged mouth, broad shoulder, tapering body, and flat disc-shaped base.
Clay: brown stoneware.
Glaze: drips of white glaze on the shoulder, flying ash glaze on the upper body and the mouth.
Decoration: a row of applique pointed scrolls on the neck and the foot, four groups of applique design on the shoulder, a row of stamped patterns on the shoulder, combed wavy lines on the body.

Curatorial Remarks

1. (Candy Chan, Research Assistant, May 6, 2003) A jar of this type with similar appliqué decoration was excavated from Kiln 61 in Si Satchanalai (Hein et al 1986, 22–33, fig. 8 (right)).

An unglazed jar of this type with grey body is in the Freer Collection (F1995.7). It was excavated at Bananan in Puerto Galera municipality, Oriental Mindaro province in Philippines.

Baluster jars of this type with appliqué coil decoration were also excavated from the Ban Tao Hai kilns, in Phitsanulok, Thailand. Hein and Sangkhanukit notice the similarity between these jars and the Si Satchanalai ones, but points out that the appliqué coils of the Phitsanulok jars are usually internal rather than external. Therefore, this jar could possibly made in Si Satchanalai (Hein and Sangkhanukit 1985, 25, fig. 19, photos 5, 8).

Jar of this type was among the ceramic finds (13th–15th century) found in upland burial sites of the Tak-Mae Sot-Umphang Region, Western Thailand. About 60–70% of the ceramic finds are Si Satchanalai wares, 15–20% Sukhothai, the rest of them are Chinese, Cham and Khmer wares (Rau and Hughes 1985, 8, fig. 6).

Hein, Don, P. Burns, and D. Richards. 1986. "An Alternative View of the Origins of Ceramic production at Si Satchanalai and Sukhothai Central Northern Thailand." SPAFA Digest VII(1): 22–33.

Hein, Don, and Prachote Sangkhanukit. 1985. Report on the Excavation of the Ban Tao Hai kilns, Phitsanulok, Thailand. Research Centre for Southeast Asian Ceramics Papers 1. Adelaide: University of Adelaide.

Rau, Jon L., and Clive Hughes. 1985. "Significance of 13th–15th Century Ceramics and Other Artifacts in Upland Burial Sites of the Tak-Mae Sot-Umphang Region, Western Thailand." The Siam Society Newsletter 1(2): 1–21.

2. (Louise Cort, 7 January 2007) Jars of this type, with appliqué turning inward on the neck, were found at Penny's Bay on Lantau Island, Hong Kong (Lam 2001, fig. 7). Lam attributes such ware to the Phitsanulok kiln.

Lam, Peter Y. K. 2001. "Ceramic Types from Penny's Bay, Hong Kong." Oriental Art XLVII(2): 36–42.

3. (Louise Cort, 14 January 2007) Don Hein includes unglazed gray jars with applied decorations among his MON ceramics made in the early phase at the Si Satchanalai kilns (Hein 2001, fig. 24-I). Although Hein is cautious about dating, he suggests that MON production centered in the 13th–14th centuries (Hein 1999, 140). MON production made use of in-ground kilns, which contributed to the smoky firing producing the gray coloration of unglazed stoneware.

Confusingly, Hein also published the jar shown in figs. 24f and 53a, where it is identified as TRSW (Transitional Stoneware), which Hein cautiously dates as 14th–15th century (Hein 1999, 150).

Changed Date from 14th–16th century to 14th–15th century.

Hein, Don. 2001. "The Sawankhalok Ceramic Industry: from Domestic Enterprise to Regional Entrepreneur". PhD Thesis, Department of Science and Technology, Deakin University, Melbourne.

Hein, Don. 1999. "The First Underglaze Painted Decoration at Sawankhalok: identification of a key influence? (Diqu shouci chuxian de youxia caihui: Taigou taoci tazhan shi shang wailai yingxiang de zhongyao xiansuo?)." Guoli Taiwan daxue Meishushi yanjiu jikan (The Taida Journal of Art History) 7: 137–158.


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