Storage Jar (Tsubo)

Storage Jar (Tsubo)

15th century

Stoneware with natural ash glaze (Shigaraki ware)

Diameter: 47.5 cm (18 11/16 in.); Overall: 53 cm (20 7/8 in.)

Gift from the Collection of George Gund III 2015.492

Description

This bulbous clay jar, with its expansive, dry orange-brown surface, white dots of feldspathic stone, and spidery crazing marks epitomizes one type of medieval ware from Shigaraki. This region east of Kyoto and north of the older cultural and religious center of Nara has long been known as a source of superior clay material. Shigaraki storage jars were crafted for strength and durability. The vessel's slightly lopsided shape shows precisely where its three lower clay sections connect with one another. The "stubble" on the upper shoulder sections is highlighted by dripping rivulets of dull-green ash glaze in one small area on the broken neck. The same natural glaze runs over the slope of the shoulder and also appears as a large splash of thin, glossy olive green where the shoulder joins the upper body.

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