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HOME : Chinese Art : Han Glazed Vessels : Han Green-Glazed Lien
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Han Green-Glazed Lien - H.830
Origin: China
Circa: 206 BC to 220 AD
Dimensions: 7" (17.8cm) high
Collection: Chinese
Style: Han Dynasty
Medium: Glazed Terracotta

$5,000.00
Location: United States
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Description
Lidded food containers of this type are known as liens. This lively green-glazed lien is notable for its elegant simplicity. Two sets of three parallel bands rendered in very low relief decorate the surface of the body. These bands serve to divide the vessels into segments that create a pleasing visual flow to the piece. The vessel stands raised on three charming feet molded in the shape of bears holding up the piece. The lien features a detachable lid decorated with a floral motif and featuring some early Chinese characters around the pedals. The gorgeous green glaze recalls similar works in bronze, and the glaze has acquired a beautiful, soft iridescent patina over the ages. Commonly referred to as “silver frost,” this iridescence is the result of wet and dry periods in a tomb whereby the clay dissolves the lead glaze and redeposits it on the surface, where it hardens. A testament of age, this patina is also admired by collectors for its charming aesthetic qualities, similar in effect to mother of pearl. Although this vessel would have functioned as a food storage container in life, it was found discovered buried in a tomb. Such a work might have originally been buried containing food inside, to be consumed by the deceased in the afterlife. A symbol for the bountiful pleasures of life, for eating and feasting, this lien would have represented the joys to be experienced in the afterlife and the feasts and celebrations yet to come. Today, this vessel is not only a gorgeous work of art, treasured for its history and rarity; but also a stunning reminder of the richness and luxury of the Han Dynasty, both in this world and the next. - (H.830)

 

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