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HOME : Islamic Art : AS UAE : Slip Painted Nishapur Jug
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Slip Painted Nishapur Jug - AMD.141
Origin: Central Asia
Circa: 900 AD to 1000 AD
Dimensions: 6.1" (15.5cm) high x 5.5" (14.0cm) wide
Collection: Islamic Art
Style: Nishapur Ware
Medium: Buff Earthenware
Condition: Very Fine

Additional Information: AS

Location: UAE
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The first indigenous Muslim dynasty to rule Iran following the Arab conquest, the Samanid Dynasty was founded in 819 A.D. by Saman- Khuda, a Persian vassal of the Abbasid Empire. However, not until the reign of Saman-Khuda’s great-grandson, Ismail I (892-907 A.D.), did Samanid power become extensive, eventually spreading outside of Iran and into Central Asia. The coins of the Samanids were used throughout North Asia, revealing their enormous influence on the region. Today, the Samanid Dynasty is renown as a time of cultural flourishing, especially in regards to the arts of poetry and pottery. The capital of Bukhara was also one of the cultural centers of the empire, along with the cities of Samarkand and Nishapur. Perhaps their most important influence on Islamic art was the Samanid innovation of slip painting that allowed for more refined, controlled glazed decorations on terracotta vessels and tiles. The Samanid Dynasty was a period of nationalism, where the Persian people regained power from the hands of foreign invaders. While Samanid power gradually waned throughout the 10th century in response to the rise of Turkic power in Central Asia and Afghanistan, during their rule the foundations of a native Iranian Islamic culture were firmly established.

This Jug is made of earthenware and features a red slip with black and white slip decoration under a transparent glaze.

Based on the distinctive design, style and colors of this outstanding jug, we can attribute it to originating from Nishapur, eastern Iran. (See Charles K.Wilkinson, Nishapur: Pottery of the Early Islamic Period, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York,1973; ch.5 nos 19-23). The use of the “yellow-staining black” pigment also allies it to another Nishapuri ware (Section Gd). The simple but effective repetitive design and the use of dotted bands anticipate later regional Iranian slipwares, particularly Sari ware.

For other comparable pieces see Oliver Watson, Ceramics from Islamic Lands, cataloging the Al- Sabah Collection in the Kuwait National Museum, 2004. pp.228/9. - (AMD.141)


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