About this artwork
Overglaze painted ceramics on a blue background, called lajvardina, were developed by Ilkhanid potters in 14th-century Iran. Lajvardina wares are known for geometric patterns, although calligraphy can also be present, especially on tiles. Such tiles have not survived in large quantities because the gold leaf and overglaze painting have suffered from exposure to the elements.Despite the diminishment of its gold leaf decoration, this tile illustrates the lavish end results of the lajvardina technique: the deep cobalt blue fills the composition, red enamel highlights the calligraphic script, and the few traces of gold leaf shimmer. Cobalt blue and gold leaf were among the most expensive materials used by potters in the medieval world.
- Fritware, molded and decorated with leaf gilding and red over a blue glaze (lajvardina)
- 18.3 × 34.8 × 4.2 cm (7 3/16 × 14 1/8 × 1 5/8 in.)
- Gift of Martin A. Ryerson