Pillow with Incised Decoration
The image of an infant boy grasping peony flowers was a design motif on ceramics and textiles during the Northern Song dynasty. The motif of male children with flowers symbolizes good fortune and the wish for male progeny for many successive generations. To directly express the auspicious sentiment, male children often held lotus flowers. The Chinese character for "lotus," lian, is a homonym of the Chinese character for "succession."
Stoneware with slip and lead glaze
5 1/2 x 14 3/4 x 8 5/8 in. (14.0 x 37.5 x 21.9 cm) (show scale)
This item is not on view
Bequest of Mr. and Mrs. Myron S. Falk, Jr.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license
. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.
Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact email@example.com
Pillow with Incised Decoration, 960-1279 C.E. Stoneware with slip and lead glaze, 5 1/2 x 14 3/4 x 8 5/8 in. (14.0 x 37.5 x 21.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Bequest of Mr. and Mrs. Myron S. Falk, Jr., 2001.6.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2001.6.2_top_PS9.jpg)
top, 2001.6.2_top_PS9.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2014
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
Bean-shaped pillow with incised and shallowly carved surface decoration on the center and sides surfaces. An infant boy with his arms raised above his head and clutching a flowering peony vine is the central motif of the pillow. Set against a background of faintly incised striations, the figure is flanked by two flowering peonies. A meandering leaf pattern decorates the sides and is also set against a striated background. A green glaze covers the surface except at the base.
The image of an infant boy grasping peony flowers was a design motif on ceramics and textiles during the Northern Song dynasty (960-1127). The motif of male children associated with flowers symbolizes good fortune and the wish for male progeny for many successive generations. The inclusion of the peony flower in these images is less common than the representation of lotus flowers since the depiction of children grasping lotuses expresses the auspicious sentiment directly - the Chinese character for lotus, lian, is a homonym of the Chinese character for succession.
It is also believed that the motif of young boys afloat with flowers was initially Indian in origin and reached China with the inception of Buddhism but held meaning to the Chinese in a way unrelated to Buddhism. On pillows, the images of male children surrounded with flowers functioned in one sense to inspire the production of many male offspring.
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.