- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Large, Broad-Shouldered Jar with Decoration of Two Striding Dragons, Each Pursuing a Flaming Jewel
- Work Type
- mid 18th century
- Creation Place: East Asia, Korea
- Chosŏn dynasty, 1392-1910
Level 2, Room 2600, East Asian Art, East Asian Painting and Decorative Arts
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- Physical Descriptions
- Blue-and-white ware: porcelain with decoration painted in underglaze cobalt blue
- H. 44.3 x Diam. 35 cm (17 7/16 x 13 3/4 in.)
- Marie-Hélène, New York (by 2003), gift; to Harvard University Art Museums, 2003.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of Marie-Hélène Weill and Claudia Weill Teller
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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- Large, broad-shouldered, narrow-waisted jars of this type were popular in Korea in the late seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. Seventeenth- and eighteenth-century examples have a short, collarlike neck and an exaggerated profile, with bulging shoulders and a constricted waist; nineteenth-century examples, by contrast, show a more subdued profile but have a tall neck and a beveled foot.
In the East Asian dualistic yin-yang interpretation of the universe, the dragon symbolizes the yang, or male, principle, while the phoenix represents the yin, or female, principle. Associated with water, the auspicious dragon is typically paired with clouds, mist, or rolling waves; the flaming jewel, borrowed from the repertory of Buddhist art, symbolizes transcendent wisdom. The motif here of a dragon chasing a flaming jewel thus symbolizes the pursuit of wisdom.
- Publication History
Harvard University Art Museums, Harvard University Art Museums Annual Report 2003-2004 (Cambridge, MA, 2005), p. 21
Stephan Wolohojian and Alvin L. Clark, Jr., Harvard Art Museum/ Handbook, ed. Stephan Wolohojian, Harvard Art Museum (Cambridge, 2008), p. 119
- Exhibition History
Plum, Orchid, Chrysanthemum, and Bamboo: Botanical Motifs and Symbols in East Asian Painting, Harvard University Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Cambridge, 07/06/2002 - 01/05/2003
32Q: 2600 East Asian, Japanese, Chinese and Korean, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 12/07/2018 - 06/04/2019; Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 12/07/2018 - 01/13/2020
- Subjects and Contexts
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 firstname.lastname@example.org