Incense Burner


Not on view

Much Chinese art is informed by a complex understanding of the past. The shape of this incense burner is a fascinating example of this tendency, having been derived from a ceramic of the Southern Song dynasty (1127–1279) that was itself inspired by an archaic ritual vessel used during the Bronze Age. The addition of a matching stand, on the other hand, can be traced to the seventeenth century, as can the alchemical treatment of the bronze, which creates a sense of surface depth comparable to that found in glazed porcelains.

No image available

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.