Tianqi porcelain

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Tianqi dish, Nantoyoso Collection, Japan Re Tenkei 1.JPG
Tianqi dish, Nantoyōsō Collection, Japan
reverse side Re Tenkei 2.JPG
reverse side

Tianqi porcelain refers to Chinese underglaze blue porcelain made in the unofficial kilns of Jingdezhen (景德镇) for a largely Japanese market in the 17th century. The term "Tianqi" (天啓; "tenkei" in Japanese) is a reference to the era name of the reign of the Tianqi Emperor (r. 1621-1628) in the late Ming Dynasty.

Jingdezhen Prefecture-level city in Jiangxi, Peoples Republic of China

Jingdezhen is a prefecture-level city, previously a town, in northeastern Jiangxi province, China, with a total population of 1,554,000 (2007), bordering Anhui to the north. It is known as the "Porcelain Capital" because it has been producing pottery for 1,700 years. The city has a well-documented history that stretches back over 2,000 years.

A Chinese era name is the regnal year, reign period, or regnal title used when traditionally numbering years in an emperor's reign and naming certain Chinese rulers. Some emperors have several era names, one after another, where each beginning of a new era resets the numbering of the year back to year one or yuán (元). The numbering of the year increases on the first day of the Chinese calendar each year. The era name originated as a motto or slogan chosen by an emperor.

Tianqi Emperor emperor of the Ming Dynasty

The Tianqi Emperor, personal name Zhu Youjiao, was the 16th emperor of the Ming dynasty, reigning between 1620 and 1627. He was the eldest son of the Taichang Emperor and a brother of the Chongzhen Emperor, who succeeded him. "Tianqi", the era name of his reign, means "heavenly opening".

Generally speaking, Tianqi porcelain was one variety of porcelain among various styles of the Jingdezhen unofficial kilns from a time of production breakdown of the official kilns at the death of the Wanli Emperor in 1620 to a time of reorganization in 1683 during the reign of the Kangxi Emperor in the Qing Dynasty. The Tianqi ware, and other associated wares, display a refreshing spontaneity of design that makes them unique in Chinese ceramic history. The influence of the master landscape artist Dong Qichang (董其昌) (1555-1636) can be discerned in the use of a dark and light color contrast.

Wanli Emperor emperor of the Ming Dynasty

The Wanli Emperor, personal name Zhu Yijun, was the 14th emperor of the Ming dynasty. "Wanli", the era name of his reign, literally means "ten thousand calendars". He was the third son of the Longqing Emperor. His reign of 48 years (1572-1620) was the longest among all the Ming dynasty emperors and it witnessed the steady decline of the dynasty.

Kangxi Emperor fourth emperor of the Qing Dynasty

The Kangxi Emperor, personal name Xuanye, was the third emperor of the Qing dynasty, and the second Qing emperor to rule over China proper, from 1661 to 1722.

Dong Qichang Ming dynasty person CBDB=35003

Dong Qichang, was a Chinese painter, scholar, calligrapher, and art theorist of the later period of the Ming Dynasty.

Designs for this ware are usually landscapes, birds and flowers, animals and human figures. Sizes are usually small to mid-size flatware and bowls. Many examples of the ware were treasured in Japan as part of the tea ceremony culture. Many examples of this ware show an unmistakable Japanese influence and it is thought that they were especially ordered from Japan by period tea masters. This ware is also known in Japan as ko sometsuke (古染付け) or “old blue-and white.” Base inscriptions are usually those from previous reigns in the dynasty with a preference for the Chenghua reign mark.

A tea ceremony is a ritualized form of making tea practiced in Asian culture by the Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Indian, Vietnamese and Taiwanese. The tea ceremony, literally translated as "way of tea" in Japanese, "etiquette for tea" or "tea rite" in Korean, and "art of tea" in Chinese, is a cultural activity involving the ceremonial preparation and presentation of tea. The Japanese tea ceremony is better known, and was influenced by the Chinese tea culture during ancient and medieval times, starting in the 9th century when tea was first introduced to Japan from China. The Vietnamese tea ceremony, also influenced by its Chinese counterpart, is only performed during weddings and other religious rituals. One can also refer to the whole set of rituals, tools, gestures, etc. used in such ceremonies as tea culture. All of these tea ceremonies and rituals contain "an adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday life", as well as refinement, an inner spiritual content, humility, restraint and simplicity "as all arts that partake the extraordinary, an artistic artificiality, abstractness, symbolism and formalism" to one degree or another.

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Japanese pottery and porcelain

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Imari ware

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Blue and white pottery porcelain style from China

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Swatow ware

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Ding ware type of Chinese ceramics

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Dehua porcelain

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Jingdezhen porcelain

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Qingbai ware

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Cizhou ware archaeological site

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Jian ware

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Jizhou ware

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Japanese export porcelain

Japanese export porcelain includes a wide range of porcelain that was made and decorated in Japan primarily for export to Europe and later to North America, with significant quanties going to south and southeastern Asian markets. Production for export to the West falls almost entirely into two periods, firstly between the 1650s and 1740s, and then the period from the 1850s onwards.

Porcelain trade in Qing China

Porcelain trade in Qing China was one of the important trading goods in during the late Ming dynasty and throughout the Qing dynasty. The porcelain that was traded reflected a transition of creative influences that altered the way porcelain looked but its high demand in Europe.

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