Title:Tea BowlArtist:Artist UnknownDate:Southern Sung dynastyCreation Place:Asia, ChinaCredit Line:Gift of Ruth and Bruce DaytonAccession Number:2000.209.3
The decorative scheme seen on this bowl is called feng-mei-wen (phoenix-and-plum design). The design elements were created with papercut stencils at the Ch'i-chou kilns in Kiangsi province, which were apparently the only kilns in traditional China that used cut-paper stencils to impart resist designs. Once the bowl had dried, it was immersed in the dark-brown glaze. When the glaze had stabilized, the phoenix and plum branch papercuts were affixed to the interior walls and a mixture of wood or bamboo ash mixed with slip was sprinkled over the whole interior. After the drying, the papercuts were removed and the vessel was fired right side up.