Portable pots

Hard to review a show and not want to tiptoe away with a lovely piece or two — especially when they are so very portable…

15th-16th C glazed stoneware with underglaze cobalt blue oxide, Vietnam, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Kassouf ©Birmingham Museum of Art

Who knew that the Birmingham Museum of Art had such a wonderful collection of Vietnamese ceramics, most of from the 11th- through 13th- centuries.  As I mentioned in the WSJ review, these ceramics have an energy that is different from Chinese works, and even the occasional burst of humor.  The ones I would sneak away with are these three. Love the exuberant brushwork on the plate above, the simple form and high foot of the beaker to the right, and the subtle richness of the vase below.

12th-14th century case, glazed stoneware, Vietnam; Bequest of William M Spencer (©Birmingham Museum of Art)

This  4-inch tall brown pot  doesn’t look like much in reproduction, but its glaze is layered and teeming with minute specks of color.  Worth keeping on the shelf for repeated viewings…

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