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Celadon Ceramics from Korea

Updated on August 16, 2014

Beautiful Celadon Pottery From Korea's Goryeo Dynasty

For thousands of years, artists, craftsmen and common people have made and used ceramics for a huge variety of purposes. Many places in the Eastern world elevated simple pottery to high art forms. Later called "celadon", this translucent blue-green glaze was the most recognizable attribute of Korean pottery and ceramic art. I discovered Korean celadon ceramics and was transfixed by their beauty. I've selected some remarkable pieces from antiquity to show you as well as modern Korean celadon pottery you can buy today.

photo: AndrewEick

Incense Burner with Kingfisher Glaze

This intricate incense burner is the 95th National Treasure of South Korea. It's currently in the collection of the National Museum of Korea.

By Steve46814 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Floral Inlaid Bowl

"The earliest Korean celadons with inlaid decoration are associated with a tomb of 1150, and so a late 12th century date is suggested for this elegant pale green bowl."

Valerie [CC-BY-SA-2.0-uk], via Wikimedia Commons

Wine Pot with gold lacquer repair, c. 1100-50

This piece wasn't always accented with gold - at some point, the gold repair was done in Japan.

"Highly prized ceramics have been repaired and restored since antiquity, often by professional craftsmen who specialised in repairs. Repairs enabled a damaged piece to be used again, or concealed a break or defect. Sometimes craftsmen added or removed parts in order to alter an object's function or to appeal to changing taste. Some repairs, such as adding metal rivets or gold lacquer, have an aesthetic interest of their own."

This piece is in the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, UK

Valerie McGlinchey [CC-BY-SA-2.0-uk], via Wikimedia Commons

Celadon Vase with Inlaid Crane Design

This vase is the 68th Nation Treasure of Korea. It features a rich green color and delicate cranes.

by Korea history at en.wikipedia [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0, GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], from Wikimedia Commons

"The Moon in a Well"

by Yi (Lee) Gyu-bo, 1168-1241

An acolyte craving

the moonlight in a well

Draws water with

it into a carafe.

Yet back to the temple,

he should see,

Tilting the jar,

the moon be gone as well.

Goryeo Dynasty Wine Ewer

This wine ewer is in the shape of a seated immortal. It is National Treasure no. 167 and is in the collection of the National Museum of Korea, Seoul.

By SJ Yang at Flickr from South Korea (yyflick66) [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Celadon Duck Figurine

Another piece from the National Museum, this figurine depicts an adorned duck.

By by ddol-mang [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Melon-Shaped Ewer with Stylized Flowers

This ewer has an underglaze incised decoration and is from the Goryeo dynasty (918-1392).

It is part of the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago - Chicago, IL

photo: westher

Here is an excellent lecture on Korean artisan's innovative introduction of the inlay technique in their celadon pottery.

Modern Korean Celadon

This piece is by a modern Korean artisan, working in a highly intricate style but using the traditional glaze.

photo: AndrewEick

Dragon Incense Burner

This incense burner is in the shape of a dragon and is from the Goryeo Dynasty.

By (a flickr user) [CC-BY-SA-2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

Fine Korean celadon pottery and antique ceramics are for sale from many sellers. These auctions end today!

Floral Stamped Ewer

This ewer has a floral pattern in the celadon glaze. It may have been for rituals. It dates back to the Goryeo period.

By de Calais (originally posted to Flickr as Koryo) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Stamped Plum Blossom Vase

This plum blossom vase from the Goryeo dynasty has a stamped floral pattern all over and a celadon glaze.

By Hiart (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Highly decorated floral celadon Ewer

This is an extremely fine ewer with a delicate floral design. From the Goryeo Dynasty.

By de Calais (originally posted to Flickr as Koryo) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Celadon Pagoda

This Pagoda was an offering from Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537-1598) to the Treasure Hall, Itsukushima Shinto Shrine (Miyajima) in Japan.

By Daderot (Daderot) [CC0 or CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Korean Celadon Ceramic Porcelain Serving Dishes, Plates and Bowls

What do you think of Korean Celadon?

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    • HwangSeongMina profile image

      HwangSeongMina 3 years ago from USA

      Beautiful pieces of celadon art. Enjoyed this pictorial that you have presented. Thank you for sharing.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 4 years ago from Idaho

      These are very pretty!

    • paulahite profile image

      Paula Hite 4 years ago from Virginia

      Beautiful Tom!

    • smine27 profile image

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      I have always found Korean Celadon to be extremely beautiful and refined. I didn't know about modern Celadon so I also learned something new.

    • Steph Tietjen profile image

      Stephanie Tietjen 4 years ago from Albuquerque, New Mexico

      It is beautiful...and the glaze simplicity only enhances the beautiful sculpture. My favorite is the dragon incense burner (pinning it).

    • GregoryMoore profile image

      Gregory Moore 4 years ago from Louisville, KY

      Beautiful pieces. Well done.

    • KamalaEmbroidery profile image

      KamalaEmbroidery 4 years ago

      It's beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

    • Tom Maybrier profile image

      Tom Maybrier 5 years ago

      @flycatcherrr: How lucky! It is quite lovely, isn't it.

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 5 years ago

      I have one small celadon bowl that a relative brought home after the Korean war. What a treasure! There is no colour in the world quite like that of celadon ceramics.

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 5 years ago

      Oh my heart be still! I Love Celadon Pottery...I had a bowl once, but didn't know what it was, I had it for many years and used it outdoors for under a plant...hence it got ruined.

      Nicely done lens!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      We watched them do these celadon. They are indeed special.

    • profile image

      rjnjlly 5 years ago

      Just awesome! The lens Presentation is equally beautiful.

    • rattie lm profile image

      rattie lm 5 years ago

      Absolutely beautiful! I loved this lens!

    • LaraineRoses profile image

      Laraine Sims 5 years ago from Lake Country, B.C.

      These treasures certainly do make an interesting lens! My favorite is the Celadon Vase inlaid with the crane design.

      It is hard for us to imagine that these were all hand made!

    • BarbRad profile image

      Barbara Radisavljevic 5 years ago from Templeton, CA

      There's some beautiful work here. I especially like the Pagoda. It gleams.

    • PromptWriter profile image

      Moe Wood 5 years ago from Eastern Ontario

      I had never heard of Korean Celadon but it is incredibly beautiful. I especially like the glazed owl.

    • Judith Nazarewicz profile image

      Judith Nazarewicz 5 years ago from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

      Loved this lens! Beautiful Celadon ceramics!

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 5 years ago from Colorado

      Quite lovely. So nice to start the day with new learning. A perfect example of how we can each be curators outside the confines of a museum.

    • profile image

      ksrpraj 5 years ago

      Awesome pictures. Loved the lens

    • Elaine Chen profile image

      Elaine Chen 5 years ago

      I like to visit a museum and spend time to watch this kind of products and imagine their story behind.

    • flicker lm profile image

      flicker lm 5 years ago

      Very nice pieces! The " floral celadon ewer" is my favorite.

    • MartieG profile image

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 5 years ago from Jersey Shore

      Such beautiful ceramics - thank you for making me familiar with Korean Celadon :>)

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 5 years ago from Scotland

      Beautiful, I especially love the Celadon Duck Figurine,

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 5 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      Love Celadon ceramics. I'm a potter so I really appreciate their artistry. Great page about Celadon.

    • profile image

      MiaMusement 5 years ago

      This was like going to a well-curated museum exhibit but without the resulting museum feet! :)

    • Adventuretravels profile image

      Giovanna Sanguinetti 5 years ago from Perth UK

      What beautiful work. Thank you for taking the time to include so many wonderful examples.

    • profile image

      webmavern 5 years ago

      These are beautiful, I love the incense burner!

    • profile image

      myspace9 5 years ago

      I love these all glassware sets, they are so pretty, want to have one of them. thanks for sharing this valuable gift lens.

    • ItayaLightbourne profile image

      Itaya Lightbourne 5 years ago from Topeka, KS

      These are all so beautiful! I love Celadon glassware and you've showcased several lovely examples. :)

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 5 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      What a gorgeous lens...thanks so much for sharing.

    • GeorgeneMBramlage profile image

      Georgene Moizuk Bramlage 5 years ago from southwestern Virginia

      What a gorgeous lens...thanks so much for sharing.

    • mytone profile image

      mytone 5 years ago

      great photos...i loved it...

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Love the beautiful exotic shapes and crafted pieces.

    • bikerministry profile image

      bikerministry 5 years ago

      These are beautiful pieces. My husband brought back some very nice treasures from his time in service in the early 70's in Korea. We have 4 dynasty wood carvings and a brass punch bowl with mugs, to name a few items. He was there 13 months during the Vietnam conflict. Beautiful pieces. Blessings.

    • Jogalog profile image

      Jogalog 5 years ago

      I love the ewers