Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Bowl with the Eight Buddhist Treasures

Ming dynasty (1368–1644)
16th century
Cloisonné enamel
H. 5 5/8 in. (14.3 cm); Diam. 11 1/2 in. (29.2 cm); Diam. of foot 5 1/2 in. (14 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Edward G. Kennedy, 1929
Accession Number:
Not on view
The objects supported by lotus stands at the center of this bowl illustrate a traditional grouping of eight "treasures”—among them an endless knot, a banner or flag, a conch shell, and a pair of fish—that were introduced with Buddhism and are often found in the later decorative arts. Here, the fish are repeated at the bottom of the bowl, while lotus blossoms, Buddhist symbols of purity, decorate the exterior. The prevalence of imagery associated with Buddhism and other religious practices in the decoration of cloisonné reflects the use of such goods in temples and palaces.
Edward Guthrie Kennedy , New York, 1929; donated to MMA
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arts of the Ming Dynasty: China's Age of Brilliance," January 23, 2009–September 13, 2009.

New York. Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture. "Cloisonné: Chinese Enamels from the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties," January 25, 2011–April 17, 2011.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Red and Black: Chinese Lacquer, 13th–16th Century," September 7, 2011–June 10, 2012.

Related Objects

Base for a Mandala

Artist: Date: 15th century
Accession Number: 1992.331
Date: 15th century Medium: Cloisonné enamel Accession: 1992.331 On view in:Not on view

Old Testament Figures

Artist: Date: 18th century
Accession Number: 1997.115a–d
Date: 18th century Medium: Cloisonné enamel Accession: 1997.115a–d On view in:Gallery 219

Jar with Carp in Lotus Pond

Artist: Date: mid-16th century
Accession Number: 17.127.2
Date: mid-16th century Medium: Porcelain painted with cobalt blue under and colored enamels over transparent glaze (Jingdezhen ware) Accession: 17.127.2 On view in:Gallery 204

Dish with mandarin ducks and lotuses

Artist: Date: first half of the 16th century
Accession Number: 2011.111
Date: first half of the 16th century Medium: Cloisonné enamel Accession: 2011.111 On view in:Gallery 219

Side Table

Artist: Date: 16th century
Accession Number: 1976.193.5a–c
Date: 16th century Medium: Wood (huanghuali, or Dalbergia odorifera) Accession: 1976.193.5a–c On view in:Gallery 218