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Identification and Creation
Object Number
2002.50.78
Title
Flat-Rimmed Bowl with Radial Design
Classification
Vessels
Work Type
vessel
Date
14th century
Places
Creation Place: Middle East, Iran
Period
Ilkhanid period
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/165187
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Fritware painted with blue (cobalt), turquoise (copper), and black (chromium) under clear alkali glaze
Technique
Underglazed, painted
Dimensions
11 x 22.3 cm (4 5/16 x 8 3/4 in.)
Provenance
Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood, Belmont, MA (1978-2002), gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2002.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art
Accession Year
2002
Object Number
2002.50.78
Division
Asian and Mediterranean Art
Contact
am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Description
Radial lines divide the interior of this bowl into twelve sections, which are decorated with three different designs—foliate motifs, cursive forms, and series of dots and fine lines. A narrow band encircles the bowl just under the flat, patterned rim. Circling the upper exterior is a cobalt-blue pseudo-inscription; below this is another band containing black scrollwork roundels.The foliate and line-and-dot motifs of this bowl, as well as the use and placement of cobalt, recall the lusterwares of the Seljuk-Atabeg period. Those prestigious vessels likely provided design inspiration for less expensive underglaze-painted wares like this one, which typifies Ilkhanid bowls in shape and decoration. Although the glaze has suffered abrasion and is cracked in several places, the bowl itself is intact.

Published Catalogue Text: In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art , written 2013
40

Flat-rimmed bowl with radial design
Iran, Ilkhanid period, 14th century [1]
Fritware painted with blue (cobalt), turquoise (copper), and black (chromium) under clear alkali glaze
11 × 22.3 cm (4 5/16 × 8 3/4 in.)
2002.50.78

Radial lines divide the interior of this bowl into twelve sections, which are decorated with three different designs—foliate motifs, cursive forms, and series of dots and fine lines. A narrow band encircles the bowl just under the flat, patterned rim. Circling the upper exterior is a cobalt-blue pseudo-inscription; below this is another band containing black scrollwork roundels.

The foliate and line-and-dot motifs of this bowl, as well as the use and placement of cobalt, recall the lusterwares of the Seljuk-Atabeg period. Those prestigious vessels likely provided design inspiration for less expensive underglaze-painted wares like this one, which typifies Ilkhanid bowls in shape and decoration.[2] Although the glaze has suffered abrasion and is cracked in several places, the bowl itself is intact.

Ayşin Yoltar-Yıldırım

[1] The bowl was last fired between 400 and 700 years ago, according to the results of thermoluminescence analysis carried out by Oxford Authentication Ltd. in 2012.
[2] See Watson 1985, fig. H; Watson 2004, 378–86.

Publication History

Jessica Chloros, "An Investigation of Cobalt Pigment on Islamic Ceramics at the Harvard Art Museums" (thesis (certificate in conservation), Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, 2008), Unpublished, pp. 1-41 passim

Mary McWilliams, ed., In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2013), p. 196, cat. 40, ill.

Exhibition History

Overlapping Realms: Arts of the Islamic World and India, 900-1900, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 12/02/2006 - 03/23/2008

In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 01/31/2013 - 06/01/2013

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at am_asianmediterranean@harvard.edu