Color used for decoration on the porcelain occurred in the late
period of Xi Jin Dynasty at first. Then simple designs composed of
brown speckles could be found on some celadon in South China. In Sui
dynasty, the hair, cap, frown, eyes and the cloths on the porcelain
has been painted by black decoration. Underglaze brown glaze was then
produced in Changsha ware in Tang dynasty. While Overglaze decoration
originated from Song dynasty. Moreover, the blue and white, underglaze
red and gold enamels just occurred in Jin and Yuan dynasty.
Various kinds of decorative porcelain occurred in succession in
Xuande and Chenghua period of Ming dynasty. For example, clobbering
red decorative on the blue and white porcelain made during the years
of Xuande and doucai contrasting colors made during Chenghua period.
The blue decorative and kingfisher blue were created in Jingdezhen
in Qing dynasty. The famille rose possessing unique decoration style
was formed gradually in the years of Kangxi and reached the summit
in Yongzheng and Qianlong period. Down to the middle period of Qing
dynasty, foreign color was began to be used because of the introduction
of decorative arts from western countries.
The artistic process during
which the pictures, decorations and veins are drawn on the porcelain
by special pigment is called decoration. It not only increases the
sense of beauty, but also enhances the artistic value of the porcelain.
The occurrence of the decoration porcelain was an important milestone
in the history of Chinese ceramics. Both Ming and Qing dynasty are
the important period in this field.
of all, the porcelain will be decorated after being
fired, then roasted in the Jin kiln. It is rich in
color because many coloring pigment can stand the
firing temperature. But it is easy to fade after rubbing
and contacting with acid or alkali things because
the painting is on the glaze. The onglaze decoration
was created in cizhou kiln in Song dynasty and developed
on the basis of low temperature colored glaze. So
it is called "Song red and green decoration".
In Ming dynasty, the manufacturing of onglaze single
decoration and multi-decoration has been improved
greatly. After Qing dynasty, the onglaze decoration
has new varieties such as "wucai", color
enamels, famille rose, "doucai" and so on.
Underglaze decoration means the
design is decorated under the glaze. First, it will
be coated a layer of transparent glaze after the
design is painted on the body. Then, it is fired
with the porcelain only once at the temperature
of 1300℃. The characteristic is that the color is
soft, smooth, insipid and elegant. At the same time,
it doesn't tend to abrase and fade because the decoration
is painted under the glaze. But their colors aren't
as rich as onglaze decoration because few color
can stand high temperature. The underglaze decoration
was fired by changsha ware initially. At first,
it is underglaze brown decoration and the decoration
is very simple. Then, it developed into two decorations
including brown and green decoration. After Song
and Yuan dynasty, some new kinds appeared, such
as blue and white, underglaze red,underglaze "wucai"
and so on.
The mature blue and white products, which
have been found were those fired in Jingdezhen in late Yuan
dynasty. That the blue and white was successfully fired
represented the epoch-making signification in the history
of Chinese porcelain-making. From then on, the color decoration
became . Other decorative techniques occupy the subordinate
status such as incised decoration, printing decoration and
Blue and white is a kind of underglaze decorative
porcelain taking on blue veins. Its manufacturing
process is as follow: first, the painting is painted
by cobalt material on the porcelain. Secondly, it
is coated by transparent glaze. Finally, it is fired
at the temperature of 1300℃. It has two characteristics.
One is that it only uses one color. The other is
that it is fired only once. It was widely used on
porcelain decoration because of the simple working
procedure. Among them, the blue and white made in
Xuande period of Ming dynasty was the best because
it used a kind of cobalt blue pigment called "suniboqing",
which is a kind of ore containing cobalt from abroad.
After the years of Chenghua, native blue pigment
such as "pingdengqing", "zhuming"
material, etc. were used.
The ancient underglaze decoration in China was
divided into two kinds: blue and red. The blue and
white belongs to blue underglaze while the underglaze
red is the underglaze decoration of red. It is called
"underglaze red" because it is painted
under the glaze.
The underglaze red possesses glorious colors and
symbolizes a kind of festive atmosphere which is
widely accepted since it was initially fired in
Yuan dynasty. It was then sequentially
produced in Ming and Qing dynasty.Those made during
the years of Xuande often appeared red while the
during Chenghua period took on bright
color. But it declined after
the middle years of Ming dynasty until Kangxi period in
Qing dynasty. What's more, the products made at the years
of Yongzheng were much better than that in the past. It
not only possesses the color of bright red but also high
blue and white underglaze red
The blue and white underglaze
red is also called " the blue and white plus
purple", that is, the fruit, flower pistil
etc. are painted by copper red among the blue and
white decoration. It was made in Yuan dynasty initially,
but terminated in early period of Ming dynasty and
then occurred again in the years of Xuande. Afterwards,
it was not made until Qing dynasty. It was regarded
as the famous varieties in ancient porcelain because
it was very difficult to be fired.
The blue and white underglaze red was one of the
well known representatives fired in Jingdezhen kiln.
It was famous for its florid color, such as blue
and white cloud pattern, the blue and white underglaze
red dragon design, etc.