Zhangzhou ware covered box with design of rabbit in moon

citation

Covered box with domed rim, tapering body and recessed foot.
Clay: porcelain, cream on rim, buff on base.
Glaze: translucent white with bluish cast; interior glazed except for rim, base partially glazed; scars of stacking material on edge of foot.
Decoration: incised single horizontal grooves at upper edge of body and lower edge of lid. Incised vertical grooves, closely spaced, on body between horizontal groove on foot and on lid between horizonal line and painted decoration. In center of lid, in grayish-blue underglaze cobalt, ring enclosing design of rabbit glancing at edge of moon, with blue wash background.
Mark: none.

Historical period(s)
Ming dynasty, late 16th-early 17th century
Medium
Porcelain with cobalt pigment under clear, colorless glaze
Style
Zhangzhou ware
Dimensions
H x W x D: 3.2 x 4.3 x 4.3 cm (1 1/4 x 1 11/16 x 1 11/16 in)
Geography
China, Fujian province, Zhangzhou kilns
Credit Line
Gift of Dean Frasché
Accession Number
F1989.5a-b
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Ceramic, Container
Type

Box

Keywords
China, clear glaze, cobalt pigment, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644), moon, porcelain, rabbit, WWII-era provenance, Zhangzhou ware
Provenance

From 1959
Dean Frasché, collected in 1959 from Djakarta, Indonesia. [1]

To 1989
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Dean Frasché, Greenwich, Connecticut. [2]

Notes:

[1] Curatorial Remark 3 in the object record.

[2] See note 1. Also see Freer Gallery of Art Purchase List after 1920, Collections Management Office.

Previous Owner(s)

Dean Frasché 1906 - 1994

Description

Covered box with domed rim, tapering body and recessed foot.
Clay: porcelain, cream on rim, buff on base.
Glaze: translucent white with bluish cast; interior glazed except for rim, base partially glazed; scars of stacking material on edge of foot.
Decoration: incised single horizontal grooves at upper edge of body and lower edge of lid. Incised vertical grooves, closely spaced, on body between horizontal groove on foot and on lid between horizonal line and painted decoration. In center of lid, in grayish-blue underglaze cobalt, ring enclosing design of rabbit glancing at edge of moon, with blue wash background.
Mark: none.

Label

The design on this small box represents the East Asian myth of the rabbit that lives in the moon, pounding the elixir of immortality. The coarse porcelain, bluish glaze, and hasty drawing are typical of wares made cheaply for export at kilns in southern Fujian Province. In Japan, however, small boxes like this one occupied a place of honor, holding incense pellets used to perfume the tearoom. This box was found in Indonesia.

Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Ceramics in Mainland Southeast Asia
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum