"Why do the pictures on porcelain look rough"


There was once a funny question, "Why do the pictures on porcelain look rough", just like the answer from a few friends: You think porcelain paintings are rough because you have never seen a good one. When you see good porcelain and compare it with good paintings, you will still feel that the porcelain paintings are rough.

But the fact is this: the level of painting on porcelain is indeed lower than that on paper.

For example, this is a bird called Crested Myna, and this is the highest level of official kiln enamel porcelain in Qianlong period.

And now, look at the Crested Myna painted by Tang Bohu again, the pinnacle of pen and ink charm, this bird alone can make Tang Gong immortal. Qianlong's Crested Myna was too far behind.

Like traditional Chinese painting, landscapes, flowers, birds, pavilions and pavilions are also painted on porcelain, which has always been an imitator of traditional Chinese painting. Due to the limitation of porcelain genre and craftsmanship, porcelain painting has never reached the level of traditional Chinese painting.

People who make porcelain are well aware of this, so ceramics majors do not call porcelain paintings as paintings, but "pattern". Landscape paintings on teapots are not landscape paintings, but landscape patterns. "Pattern" and "painting" must not be compared.

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What is the reason? For example, this Guiguzi Xiashanyuan blue and white pot is worth 220 million. But when I circled this jar more than ten times, my IQ was burned out, and I couldn't imagine this scene:

This is the congenital deficiency of porcelain painting. Porcelain is round (there are also square ones), and you can only see part of it at a glance. For the audience, this is very unpleasant. Later, a solution appeared: kaichuan(开窗), also known as kaiguang(开光). Draw the boundary of the picture on the porcelain, and the picture can be seen unobstructed. One problem with this is that the picture is small, and the bottles and cans are not big and if you draw a piece, it will be even smaller.

Another is to concentrate the paintings on one side, which has been the most used method since the Ming and Qing Dynasties. For example, this pen holder has a blank back. But neither of these two methods can solve the perspective problem of the circle, and the picture will be deformed.

In addition to the device type, there are also process limitations. Among all porcelains, blue and white are the closest to ink painting, but it is difficult for even professional Chinese painters to paint blue and white. Because blue and white pigments are very sticky, it is difficult to express the charm of ink on rice paper. As for pastel enamel, it is even more troublesome. First, the glass white is used as a base, and then oil is used for coloring. There are all kinds of unpleasant smells and poison.

After the painting is finished, it needs to be fired, and the color will change when it is fired. When a porcelain worker paints, he can't see the effect of the finished product. For example, the blue and white are black, and the pastel is dark. It all depends on experience. Moreover, the glaze has fluidity, which will affect the effect of the picture more or less.

That's why I say painting on porcelain is inherently deficient.

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Painters, especially talented painters, mostly hope to express the results of independent thinking and express philosophical or political opinions through their works. For example, Dong Qichang and Shi Tao in the Ming and Qing Dynasties had a set of art theories, and they wrote books on them. Even if they scribble a few strokes casually without expressing anything, they will be interpreted by the critics of later generations and come up with many meanings out of thin air. This is the social orientation of artists. People regard them as profound elites, fashion leaders, and their every gesture has a deep meaning.

The craftsmen who painted porcelain in ancient times were different. They did not have the ideal of artists and were not highly educated. They share the same values as those around them and do not consider themselves superior to others. When they painted porcelain, they didn't want to affect the hearts of the audience, they only cared about whether people would like it. They repeat a popular image year after year, perhaps painting tirelessly for a lifetime, or even generations. For example, there is a kind of blue-and-white tableware painted with phoenix pavilions. It has been painted since the Ming Dynasty until now, and it has hardly changed. The so-called craftsmanship is nothing more than that.

In the eyes of ordinary people, the Guiguzi downhill jar just mentioned is just a character, nothing more. Only those who understand Chinese culture can restore the various legends of Guiguzi. Almost all old things are facing such a situation, things are changing, and the meaning behind them is disappearing. For example, cats and butterflies painted on vases represent longevity, and lotuses and halberds represent promotion. This context has gradually declined.

The pictures of porcelain in the past are not only practical and appreciative, but also allegorical. Porcelain workers painted pictures such as "Three Mores and Five Blessings", "Water Margin West Chamber" and so on, precisely because the meaning of these patterns had formed an inherent and stable pattern in people's minds at that time. When they saw the patterns, they thought of the meaning behind them. "value" at the time.

Professor Wu Hung said: The historical form of a work of art will not automatically appear in the existing state, but needs to be reconstructed through in-depth historical research. This reconstruction is based on careful observation of existing objects, and a large amount of historical documents and archaeological materials must also be retrieved.

Of course, it is not realistic to ask lovers to "retrieve a large amount of historical documents and archaeological materials", but perhaps people can know that the perspective of appreciating ancient porcelain is not just aesthetics.

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