A rare and strikingly beautiful type of ceramic ware used in the private quarters of the Forbidden City, the Chinese imperial palace in Beijing. These numbered Jun wares—so named because each is marked on its base with a single Chinese numeral—have long been admired for their fine potting, distinctive shapes, and radiant purple and blue glazes. Opinions on these vessels’ dates of origin vary widely, and given the scarcity of numbered Jun in most museum collections, a comprehensive study of this unusual ware has never been undertaken outside the imperial collections in China and Taiwan.
Drawn entirely from the museums’ permanent collections, this exhibition introduces the typology, technical characteristics, collecting history, and controversies surrounding numbered Jun ware. It features approximately half of the museums’ 60 numbered Jun.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.