shallow dish with small flat rim; painted orange and brown; central organic scrolling design; brown rim with orange dots and zigzags; character(?) repeated 5 times around rim, 3 times on bottom

Dish, 3rd-2nd century BCE

Unknown artist, expand_more

Lacquer over wood coreexpand_more

Gift of Ruth and Bruce Daytonexpand_more  2000.38.4

Lacquerware vessels were widely used for food and drink in the palaces and households of the Han aristocracy. Made from the sap of a type of sumac, lacquer was difficult and expensive to produce, but greatly treasured. Light, durable, impervious to water, and conducive to painted decoration, it had nearly replaced inlaid bronze and gilt vessels by the end of Han (206 B.C.-A.D. 220). The style of this dish, with its thick wood core and its painted designs of clustered hooks, curls, and triangles, is nearly identical to lacquer vessels excavated from a Western Han tomb at Mao chai-yuan in Hupei province. Unfortunately, lacquer often does not survive burial well and relatively few well-preserved examples from the ancient period exist.

Details
Title
Dish
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2000.38.4
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shallow dish with small flat rim; painted orange and brown; central organic scrolling design; brown rim with orange dots and zigzags; character(?) repeated 5 times around rim, 3 times on bottom