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Catalog Data

Earthenware with painted decoration
H x W x D: 24.5 x 21.2 x 21.2 cm (9 5/8 x 8 3/8 x 8 3/8 in)
Gansu ware
Gansu province, China
ca. 2000 BCE
Neolithic period
Urn, with globular body, tall neck with everted mouth, and flat base. One strap handle, overlaid with a narrower strip of clay, longitudinally oriented, at the juncture of neck and shoulder; two-thirds down the urn on the other side is one small projection in the form of a vestigal handle, latitudinally oriented.
Clay: buff earthenware; surface has many scratch marks and small holes.
Glaze: none.
Decoration: geometric design painted in black and dark reddish brown. The main zone, which occupies the upper three-quarters of the exterior, is defined by two horizontal bands, one running around the shoulder and the other one-quarter of the way around the base. The decoration of this zone consists of four large circles with identical decoration, separated by a supplementary motif of one pair of bifurcated curved lines at the bottom. The circles are filled with a design which consists of a cross whose four arms are traversed by six trellised bands; the spaces left within each circle are filled with four [drawing]-shaped motifs. Around the neck are two rows of tapering vertical lines. Around the interior of the neck are three rows of the saw-tooth motif, each of which increases in height.
Freer Gallery of Art Collection
Exhibition History:
Clay and Metal: Ancient Chinese Ceramics and Metal (February 25, 1997 to August 9, 2011)
A Decade of Discovery: Selected Acquisitions 1970-1980 (November 9, 1979 to May 22, 1980)
Chinese Ceramics (April 11, 1978 to September 4, 1980)
Chinese Calligraphy and Ceramics (April 18, 1977 to April 8, 1978)
Chinese Art (January 1, 1963 to March 6, 1981)
Gansu ware  Search this
Neolithic period (ca. 7000 - ca. 1700 BCE)  Search this
China  Search this
earthenware  Search this
Chinese Art  Search this
Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Anna C. Chennault
Accession Number:
Restrictions & Rights:
Usage conditions apply
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery