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The Connoisseurship of Ceramics in the Ming Dynasty and the Issue of Heirloom Ge wares
Ge Ware,Heirloom Ge Wares,Guan Ware System,Crackle,Connoisseurship of Ceramics,Ming Dynasty,Gegu Yaolun,
|Publication Year :||2019|
In the past few decades, there are many studies on the Heirloom Ge wares. According to these studies, the possible production site of the Heirloom Ge wares includes Laohudong kiln, Jingdezhen in Jiangxi, and the North area. In addition, some of the Heirloom Ge wares are highly similar to the Southern Song Guan wares; it is also the so-called “ hardly differentiating Guan wares from Ge wares 官哥不分 ”. Based on the past studies, and integrating the various ideas put forward by the predecessors, this paper tries to use the connoisseurship on ceramics in the Ming dynasty to explain why the origin production site of the Heirloom Ge wares is so complicated and to review the appearance of Ge ware and the process about how it to be shaped.
This paper firstly collects and organizes the existing Heirloom Ge wares and the Guan or Ge Type wares in the tombs and hoards, and then analyzes the relationship between the two and the Southern Song Guan wares. Secondly, through the combination of historic texts, this paper tries to prove the surmise proposed by scholars in the past that there are a considerable part of the Heirloom Ge wares deriving from the Southern Song Guan ware or produced from the Hangzhou Laohudong kiln between the Southern Song and Yuan period. Then, this paper indicate that in Gegu Yaolun 格古要論, compiled in the early Ming period, neither did the Ge ware hold a high position, nor did it have a clear crackle image. But in late Ming period, Ge wares had become a representative of the crackled ceramics, and had shared equal status with the Guan wares. The key turning point is the appearance of Longquan Ge wares in the Jiajing period, which gave Ge ware a clear crackle feature.
Coupled with the antiquarian trends in the late Ming period, the crackled glaze on ceramics, as the symbol of the ancient times, has become the object of folk competition, so that the existing Heirloom Ge wares also contains some imitations after the Ming period. Besides, although scholars had pointed out that the crackled ceramics are popular in the late Ming period, this paper through the comparison about the unearthed crackled ceramics in tombs and Jingdezhen imperial kiln in the early Ming period with the Heirloom Ge wares, and at the same time analyze the record about “crackled ceramics 碎器 ” in Ce Yan Ru Ming Ji 策彥入明記, this paper speculates that the crackled glaze ceramics outside the Guan ware system might had been popular before the Jiajin period (1522-1566) dynasty, and reached to the peak in the late Ming period.
Finally, this paper also probes the records in Xuande ding yi pu 宣德鼎彝譜 and the ceramics engraved with Emperor Qianlong’s poetry to explain why the existing Heirloom Ge wares are connected with the legendary Ge ware so closely. Considering the influence of the connoisseurship on ceramics in the Ming dynasty, it is understandable that why the conclusions of the past studies are so far apart. The reason is that the style characteristics of the Heirloom Ge wares we attach on today are influenced and shaped by the narrative of the Ming Dynasty and later .
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