Earthenware; luster-painted on an opaque white glaze
H. 2 1/2 in. (6.4 cm) Diam. 9 in. (22.9 cm) Wt. 15.2 oz. (431 g)
Purchase, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1964
Not on view
Luster-painted bowls made in Abbasid Iraq often featured representations of birds, mythical beasts, human beings, and vegetal patterns. This example’s playful depiction of camels is a rare departure from the typical iconographic repertory. The medallion layout and the repeating design of the camels with palanquins on their backs lend a sense of dynamism to the piece, almost as if the artist wanted to show the beasts proceeding in a caravan.
Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings
Inscription: In Arabic, on the underside: [Inscription unread]
[ Royal-Athena Galleries, New York, until 1964; sold to MMA]
Ekhtiar, Maryam. "Shimmering Surfaces: Lustre Ceramics of the Islamic World." Arts of Asia vol. 42 (2012). p. 92, ill. fig. 3 (color).