An Islamic Cobalt Blue Glazed Bowl, ca. 12th century CE


This fine, thin walled bowl is outstanding for its aesthetic qualities resulting from the formal simplicity and deep cobalt blue color. Beautifully turned, the straight wall features a decorative frieze pattern into the body of the clay using both geometric and floral forms.  The bowl is covered with a thick layer of glaze that covers the entire surface except for the bottom and the small disc-shaped base.  Before hardening during the firing process, the glaze accumulated more abundantly at the inner bottom of the vessel.

Dimensions:  Height: 3 1/8 inches (8 cm), Diameter: 7 1/4 inches (18.4 cm)

Condition:  Professionally rejoined from several pieces with minor fill to losses.  A beautiful example of type.

Provenance:  The Hauge Collection of Ancient & Iranian Art, assembled between 1962 and 1966. Foreign service brothers, Victor and Osborne Hauge, together with their wives Takako and Gratia, assembled their collection of Persian, Japanese, Chinese, and Southeast Asian works of fine and folk art while stationed overseas with the US government after WWII. In consultation with academics and dealers, the Hauges assembled over two decades of what former Freer Gallery of Art director Harold Stern described in 1957 as "without doubt one of the finest private collections in the world". Victor and Takako published Folk Traditions in Japanese Art to coincide with a traveling exhibition held from 1978 at the Cleveland Museum of Art; Japan House Gallery, New York; and Asian Art Museum, San Francisco. Much of their collection was donated to the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery at the Smithsonian Institute culminating in an exhibition and published catalogue in 2000. The balance of the collection, including this object, was inherited by descent in 2016.

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