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By Jon Singer on April 7, 2011
TJIIRRS: Number 2 of an Ongoing Series
In Pursuit of Yohen Tenmoku
Late April, 2005
When you decide to replicate an ancient glaze, there are usually a few paths you can take. If there’s an analysis, for example, you can try making a glaze with that composition and working from there. If there are modern glazes with similar appearance, you can start with one or more of those and tweak.
In the case of Yohen Tenmoku, unfortunately, we don’t quite have either of those options. The ancient glazes are among the rarest of Song pieces; there is an iridescent oilspot bowl (just one) in the Miho Museum, and three bowls in other museums, all of which resemble each other in terms of glaze and effect but are not standard oilspot. (We’ll deal with the Miho Museum’s bowl later: I haven’t even started on that one yet.) There are no shards of either type that I’m aware of, and so there are no analyses. Nobody knows exactly where or when these bowls were made, though I think they are very clearly Jian ware. All of these are designated National Treasures and Important Cultural Objects, if my information is » Read the rest