Skip to Content
Closed today, next open Thursday. Closed today, next open Thursday.

Footed Dish with Lotus Medallion and Cloud Scrolls

A work made of earthenware with impressed decoration and three-color (sancai) lead glazes.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

Image actions

  • A work made of earthenware with impressed decoration and three-color (sancai) lead glazes.


Tang dynasty (618–907), first half of 8th century



About this artwork

Chinese potters of the mid-Tang dynasty (c. 675-750) revitalized a centuries-old tradition of low-fired, lead-rich glazes colored with metallic oxides. Artists of the late Western Han dynasty (1st century B.C.) had pioneered this technology by coating vessels, figures, and other objects of porous red earthenware with striking but easily weathered glazes of copper green and iron amber-brown. Utilizing harder and lighter-toned clays (often brightened with white slip), carefully fritted (melted and crushed) glazes, and measured recipes of metallic oxides, the Tang created stable and brilliant hues. Generally termed “three-color” (sancai) after the archetypical combination of bright green, amber, and white (transparent) glazes, this palette also included a rare cobalt blue probably imported from Persia. Such fluid glazes could be dripped, spotted, splashed or neatly contained within carved, molded or impressed outlines.

This footed dish was crisply impressed with a central, lotus-like medallion and surrounding cloud-like scrolls. Within those sharply grooved outlines, the craftsman carefully painted the amber, green, and blue glazes. The rim is painted in blue and the legs and underside in amber.


Currently Off View


Arts of Asia


Footed Dish with Lotus Medallion and Cloud Scrolls


China (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

701 CE–750 CE


Earthenware with impressed decoration and three-color (sancai) lead glazes


6.3 × 29.5 cm (2 1/2 × 11 5/8 in.); Diam.: 29.5 cm (11 5/8 in.)

Credit Line

Lucy Maud Buckingham Collection

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

Learn more.

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions