Tag Archives: ancient blue pottery

Enter the blue glaze yonder


The art of blue pottery:

A deep tradition exists for the alluring blue pottery. Archeological excavations on the Iranian and Central Asian  plateaus have uncovered turquoise blue glazed pottery that dates back to 224AD. These finds included “pilgrim flasks” and large bowls and grain storage jars..As Persia was a central trading hub the glazing technique were believed to have been  introduced from either Egypt or Mesopotamia. The Persian potters were highly innovative and pioneered numerous new techniques.
Painting decoration under a clear glaze was first attempted by Islamic potters in Syria, probably during the late 9th or in the 10th century. The colours used in underglaze-painting were limited to three: cobalt blue, turquoise and black. The decoration of most of these underglaze-painted vessels utilized floral designs and epigraphic patterns. Cobalt blue, or occasionally even turquoise glaze were also utilised for lustre decoration on wares produced in Kasham which was a pottery centre in Persia  Apart from vessels, Kashan potters also produced large numbers of tiles and mihrabs, some of which were made up of several lustre tiles.
Blue glazed ceramic tiles dating back to 900AD were also discovered in Multan in Pakistan and these had been used to construct a Mosque These Kashi  tiles were influenced by Persian designs and production techniques and are believed to have been introduced from Kashgar, China under the influence of the Chinese Mongols. It is believed they refined the blue glazing method by combining Chinese glazing techniques with Persian decoarative procedures.
Kashi Ceramic Tiled Mosaic
The blue glaze pottery methods then went on to Kashmir where its strict application for only temples, tombs and palaces were relaxed and it became widely used for pottery production. Eventually blue pottery techniques found there way down to Delhi and Rajastan during the reign of the Moghul Rulers in the 14th century. Rajasthan became a centre for blue pottery after the monarchs of Jaipur patronised the art. The technique had evolved to using ground quartz , Multani mitti ( fullers earth ), borax gum, cobalt oxide, sodium sulphate and other salt powders.. Legend has it that blue-pottery items were used by the Mughal kings to test their food, as they could tell by the change in the glaze of the pottery if the food had, in all probability, been tampered with or poisoned.

Ming Dynasty porcelain box

Ceramic Flask

This large bottle was made in Iran in 17th century Safavid Iran, probably at Kirman. Unlike much of the earlier Iranian pottery of this period, both the shape and the decoration using coloured slip and underglaze blue showcase elements of native Islamic design and tradition, rather than imitate Chinese designs.

The Wrath Of Khan.

The Great Ghengis Khan and his marauding Mongols, apart from the usual plundering and pillaging during their invasion of Persia in 1220, razed the key pottery manufacturing centres of Nishapaur, Ray, Kashan and Jorjan. As they traded pottery on the Silk Road along with the Persians, maybe they were vying for a trade advantage, along with getting information on their unique production techniques.

More blue. ( astro/numero babble )

The blue color is ruled by the planet Jupiter which has just entered a 7 year transit through Piceas. This only occurs every 84 years and it is an auspicious combination. As 3 is also ruled by Jupiter, along with the powerful 21, 2010 is destined to be a pivotal year, especially for spiritual, intuitive and artistic growth, particularly beyond the second half of the year.

450px-397px-Blue pottery.jpg

Dutch Deft Platter-1730

Dutch Deft  1730


Ardmore Pottery

Japanese Ceramic cup

Japanese Cup ( Chawan )

Roman cobalt blue glass aryballos –

( Sasson Ancient Art )

Fritware, underglaze painted in blue and turquoise, glazed. Iznik  1535 – 1540

Puebla Dish


Box Chinoiserie, Delft, Netherlands

Box Chinoiserie from Delft, Netherlands

Safavid Blue and white globular vessel

A Rare Safavid Blue And White Globular Footed Huqqa Base, Persia, 17th Century. photo Sotheby’s

German Ceramic Teapot

German teapot

 A. F. Simpson Vase –  

Moonlit landscape of Spanish moss and live oak trees, 1927

French Dish

Magda Smoleńska – floating water

Angela Mellor

 Turquoise glaze tall Chinese ceramic vase ( Ruby Lane )

see more  Vase Arts



Pottery in the subcontinent

The Pottery Of India

Indian utilitarian potteryThe origin of Indian pottery goes back to the Indus Valley civilization. Due to the problems of transportation in the early days the potters came to the villages and set up shop on the outskirts. Usually this was a family enterprise, some of the pottery being created on wheels and some were handmade. After finding suitable soil they built their temporary kilns and produced and sold their wares before moving on to the next village. The pots were favored for water transportation and storage, grain storage along with cooking pots and storage for oil, beer, milk, and curd. Some of the grain storage pots were 10 ft high and 5 Ft wide earthenware.

Over time distinctive styles emerged in the different states of India. These days it seems every village in India has a resident potter ( known as a Khumbar ) and they usually work from home and have a remarkable collection of pottery ware to sell, usually displayed on the street in front of their houses.


The making of glazed pottery developed under the influence of the Arabs in India and the Mogul art inspired some of the designs.This occurred around the 12th century when the Muslim rulers encouraged potters from the middle east to settle in India. To this day pottery is utilized for a vast array of domestic, religious and special occasions. Painted pots for marriages, pots for Sanskrit seedling ceremonies, lamps for the” festival of lights”( diwali ), common earthenware, along with decorative pieces ( eg, vases , bowls ,teapots )

lidded pottery with floral decorationLidded pottery


collection of Indian blue pots

Indian blue pottery



The bulk of Indian pottery is characterized by three main styles, black pottery, blue pottery and terracotta as well as the unglazed being  divided into paper thin, scrafito and highly polished. In some parts of India the potters maintain a high status due to being involved in the production of deities for religious ceremonies, terracotta being the common medium. Terracotta horses of the height of 7 metres have been used in temples.

Incised Indian pottery

Intricate pottery decorationFine detail pottery decoration



Indian Storage Pots



throwing clay on a pottery wheel

Throwing clay



red twin handled pot with mandlala motifs

Red twin handled pot


Red baluster pottery with floral bandRed baluster pottery with floral band




Outdoor pottery market in IndiaOutdoor pottery market in India



selection of market pottery

Market pots


Mastercraftsman Harikrishan Kumbhar creating on a pottery wheel

Mastercraftsman Harikrishan Kumbhar on pottery wheel




street pottery market

Surajkund mela


Two Ganesha statues

Kapaleeshwarar Temple Chennai

Kapaleeshwarar Temple Chennai (meandfrenchie.com)



Jaipur Pottery


Sona s Pottery


Pottery art market in Gujarat, India  ( gypsygeek )

Painting pots in India

Indian women potters

Prince Andrew at the Kumbharwada-potters colony, Mumbai

Potter at work in the village of Gunupur, Orissa, India. Photo  – Chris Lisle