Jar with Dragon and Clouds Design

Jar with Dragon and Clouds Design

철화 백자 운룡무늬 호 (鐵畵白磁雲龍文壺)

late 1600s

Porcelain with underglaze iron

Diameter of base: 13.7 cm (5 3/8 in.); Overall: 34.7 cm (13 11/16 in.)

Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. Fund 1986.69


Did you know?

A mythical creature believed to have the power to make rain, the dragon is a prominent symbol of rulers in pre-modern East Asia, thus the image of dragons was used exclusively for the king's paraphernalia.


A whimsical dragon with bulging eyes wraps his scaled body around this vessel. Freely dispersed squiggly lines represent a series of lightning strikes. Realizing the impossibility of depicting a mythical being in a realistic sense, the artist imaginatively visualized this frightening, yet beneficial beast believed to have an ability to provide rain in times of drought. Coincidentally, in the late 1600s, when this jar was probably created, Korea suffered from erratic climate patterns including severe droughts in the summer.

See also
Korean Art
Korean Art
Type of artwork: 

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