Small shallow bowl of light brown clay on short
foot, slip-painted so-called “ buff” or polychrome
Exterior completely undecorated. Interior vividly
decorated, roundel with floral decoration in
black, extending to the rest of the bowl. All
created spaces in between are covered in dark
Household items such as bowls, were made with
slips (diluted clay) following an entirely local
design throughout the area surrounding
Nishapur. These slip wares are easily
distinguishable from pottery produced in the rest
of the Abbasid Empire, to which Nishapur
belonged, and in addition bear no relation to the
highly popular Chinese-style ceramics, which
were also produced in Nishapur at the time.
Because it can be extended infinitely, vegetal
ornamentation can often be seen as a reminder
of the infiniteness of God.
Iran, Nishapur, 10th century. Ht. 11cm; Top
diam. 23cm; Base diam. 9cm. (JB.1164)
For an in-depth description of Slip-painted
Wares see: Oliver Watson, Ceramics from Islamic
Lands, New York, 2004: pp.204-245.