A carved Korean celadon lotus-pattern flower-shaped dish

高麗 十二世紀   青瓷刻蓮花紋碟

The dish is of shallow footless form with steeply rounded low sides rising to a sharply everted notched six-lobed rim. The well is carved in flat relief with six panels each enclosing a large lotus blossom, with striated detailing, around a wide central circular field decorated in a similar style with two further blossoms on curling stems. A glaze of blue-green colour covers the inside of the dish, pooling in the recesses of the decoration to bring the design into sharper relief. The exterior, including the footless base, is similarly glazed, burnt to a browner tone in places, and shows three small widely spaced spur-marks.

Private Japanese Collection

‘Korean Ceramics’, Inoue Oriental Art, Japan, 2018, no. 4

Goryeo ceramics are highly various, and – unlike with Chinese ceramics from the same period - it is quite rare to find matching examples. Perhaps this can be accounted for by considering the wealth of models afforded to the Korean potters from across China, as well as from their own impressive repertory of forms. In the case of the present small dish, there are echoes of Chinese silver, of qingbai, of Dingyao and even of Ruyao, but the whole is unmistakably Korean.

For another lobed Korean dish, in the Fitzwilliam Museum, see Korean and Chinese Ceramics, no.51, p. 25.

Dimensions: Diameter: 11.8 cm, 4⅝ inches

Date: Goryeo dynasty (918-1392), 12th century

Stock No. 2303