The Oriental Ceramic Society 
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The lectures are only open to members of the society and you are asked to make contact with the secretary if you would like to attend.
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Blue-and-white brushrest
From Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province, southern China. Ming dynasty, reign of Zhengde (AD 1506-21)





P.O. Box 517

Cambridge CB21 5BE, U.K.

Tel/Fax: + 44 (0) 1223 881328


Email address:

Web address:


Dear Members,


A happy and fruitful 2015 to all of you and I hope to see many of you during this year’s events!


The autumn season began with a rare glance into a little known Japanese manufactory, when David Hyatt-King presented a cornucopia of unusual figurines and models from Hirado. In an OCS/ Bonhams lecture during ‘Asian Art in London’ Jessica Harrison-Hall, co-curator of the British Museum’s magnificent early Ming exhibition, brought People of the Ming to life through lucid and lively insights into daily life. Dr. Ni Yibin gave a most fitting Memorial Lecture for Sir Michael Butler entitled Not Imperial but Simply Beautiful, preceded by the screening of a film in which Sir Michael himself talked about his collecting. In the last lecture of 2014, Dr. Lisa Golombek high-lighted Middle Eastern ceramics from the Timurid and Safavid periods and their connection to Chinese wares under the title A New Narrative for post-Mongol Pottery.  Jacqueline Simcox started this year with the 2015 Bonhams/OCS lecture, an erudite and enthusiastic introduction to Chinese court costumes.


In February, Dr. Qin Dashu, Professor at Beijing University and one of China’s foremost archaeologists, will introduce new research on the Ding ware kilns; this year’s Sonia Lightfoot Paintings Lecture will be given in March by Professor Dr. Roderick Whitfield, Percival David Professor Emeritus at SOAS, with a review of 2014 as an auspicious year for Chinese painting in London; in April we will hear about contemporary Chinese porcelains from Kate Newnham, Senior Curator at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery; this year’s Woolf Jade lecture in May will be given by Dr. Jason Sun from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and at the AGM in June Dr. Liu Yang of the Minneapolis Institute of Art will introduce Daoist Grotto Heavens.


For the next Exhibition we have a generous offer from Sotheby’s London for space at their Bond Street premises during Asian Art in London 2016 and support from the Chinese Department.  We would like the exhibition to be a showcase of collecting Asian ceramics within the OCS; we would prefer to show rare, unusual, curious, amusing and idiosyncratic pieces and are aiming less at the classic, well-known types. If you would like to propose ceramics of any period or region in Asia, which are in some way special, for this exhibition, please send up to 10 low-resolution images to by mid-March 2015.  Please indicate size and give your contact details.


Finally, I am happy to report that Council Member Angela McAteer will move to New York in the coming months and has agreed to act as US representative of the Oriental Ceramic Society there. So we hope to be able to offer a small programme of events to our US members also in the future.


Regina Krahl





Lectures will be held at the Society of Antiquaries of London, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BE, either at 6.00 p.m., or with welcome drinks in advance, at 5.45 p.m. for 6.15 p.m., unless otherwise noted*.



Tuesday 10th February

5:45 pm for 6:15 pm with welcome drinks sponsored by Woolley & Wallis

Professor Dr Qin Dashu

New Research on the Ding Ware Kilns


The Ding kilns in Quyang county, Hebei, were the most representative producers of white porcelain during the period from Song to Yuan. Ding wares stand for the best fine white porcelain of the Northern Song dynasty, represent the taste of Song dynasty elites, and are valued as one of the Five Classic Wares of the Song period. Among Song kilns, the Ding kilns saw the longest period of manufacturing for the royal court, and are more frequently mentioned in contemporary records than any other kilns. Recent years saw finds of Ding wares all over China, which demonstrates the significance of this ware in everyday life, state rituals and the border trade of the Song era.


In 2009, Peking University led a large-scale excavation and made important discoveries. This talk introduces the excavation and subsequent new research. Firstly, it will address the question of when the Ding kilns started and will discuss the main characteristics of wares from this little-known period in the late 8th/early 9th century. Secondly, it will introduce characteristic features of Ding wares of different periods, particularly the period when the kilns thrived, in the mid to late Jin dynasty. Thirdly, the production of Ding wares for the Song and Jin royal courts will be examined.


QIN Dashu is Professor at the School of Archaeology and Museology, Peking University, where he received his BA, MA and PhD degrees, and Director of the Peking University Centre of Ceramic Art and Archaeology. He is a leading scholar on Chinese ceramics and author and editor of many publications, among them over 100 articles, many of which have been translated into foreign languages.  Dr Qin has lectured worldwide and been a visiting scholar at the Freer/Sackler Galleries of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., the Singapore National University, and the Chicago Institute of Art. He has led many excavation and research projects on archaeology and Chinese ceramics in particular, funded by organizations such as the China Social Science Foundation, China State Bureau of Cultural Heritage, China Ministry of Education, and the Getty Grant Program. Recent projects have included excavations in Kenya funded by the Chinese government on remains of Chinese-African relations and trade. Two kiln site excavations he led were listed in China among the Top Ten Archaeological Discoveries of the Year (2001 & 2009).  Dr Qin is Chief Editor of the Bulletin of Chinese Ceramic Art and Archaeology, a half-yearly journal newly launched by Peking University, which at present is primarily in Chinese but aims at becoming bilingual in due course.


Tuesday 10th March

5:45 pm for 6:15 pm with welcome drinks sponsored by Woolley & Wallis

The Sonia Lightfoot Paintings Lecture

Professor Dr Roderick Whitfield

2014: A Fine Year for Chinese Painting in London


Chinese paintings are rare visitors to the London exhibition scene, but the past year has been a truly exceptional one, beginning with the splendid show at the Victoria and Albert Museum, "Masterpieces of Chinese Painting, 700-1800" which was pronounced by one senior scholar in the field to be "the best Chinese painting exhibition, ever." This was followed in the summer by a choice selection of paintings from the British Museum's own collection, entitled "Gems of Chinese Painting - A voyage along the Yangzi River". Together with this exhibition, 2014 saw the return to exhibition of Gu Kaizhi's world-famous handscroll The Admonitions of the Court Instructress to the Palace Ladies after a long period of conservation, and the dedication of two adjacent spaces to Buddhist paintings from Dunhuang. The year was rounded off by "Ming: Fifty Years that Changed China" in the new Sainsbury exhibition gallery, with a number of fine paintings from the fifteenth century. Such a rich offering in just one year calls for celebration.


Roderick Whitfield is Percival David Professor, Emeritus at SOAS, University of London. He studied at SOAS, Cambridge and Princeton, where he received his doctorate in Chinese painting and worked with Peter Swann to set up the Asian Art Gallery in the newly rebuilt Princeton Art Museum. From 1968 to 1984 he was Assistant Keeper in the Department of Oriental Antiquities (now Department of Asia), The British Museum, where he mounted numerous exhibitions on Chinese art, Chinese paintings and rubbings of calligraphy, and Buddhist paintings from Dunhuang. In 1984 he was appointed as Professor of Chinese and East Asian Art at SOAS, and Head of the Percival David Foundation. At SOAS he established new posts in Chinese Archaeology and in Japanese Art. Former students of his are now in senior curatorial positions at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Minneapolis Institute of Art, the Museum für Asiatische Kunst, Berlin, and the National Palace Museum, Taipei, and in teaching positions in Hong Kong, Edinburgh and Taiwan. He has written extensively on Chinese painting and on the Buddhist art of Dunhuang, and continues to research in these subjects.


Tuesday 14th April

5:45 pm for 6:15 pm with welcome drinks sponsored by Woolley & Wallis

Kate Newnham

Ahead of the Curve: New china from China.  Contemporary Chinese ceramics and glass


Whilst many people are aware of the mass-produced Chinese ceramics available in home furnishing stores or modern copies of Chinese imperial wares, less is known outside China about contemporary Chinese studio ceramics and glass. A partnership project developed over a four-year period between Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, The Potteries Museum, Stoke-on-Trent, Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum and twocities gallery, Shanghai, has aimed to provide new insights into this scene. The resulting touring exhibition Ahead of the Curve: New china from China (with accompanying catalogue) presents the work of 20 Chinese artists working today in ceramics and glass, most of whom have not shown in the UK before. To what extent are artists drawing on Chinese traditions and/or international experience? Do they make their own work or harness the skills of others and how do concepts and craft skills come together? By asking these questions, Ahead of the Curve aims to stimulate research into Chinese ceramics and glass, both areas of artistic practice which are undergoing rapid change and development.


Kate Newnham is Senior Curator, Visual Arts at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery where she is responsible for the Eastern Art collection. She is a co-curator of the Ahead of the Curve project along with Claire Blakey, Curator of Art, The Potteries Museum, Stoke-on-Trent, Helen Brown, Freelance Curator, and Professor Shannon Guo of Shanghai University and twocities gallery. Alexandra Nachescu, Exhibition Coordinator in the UK, has provided research in Chinese and co-authored the catalogue.

Tuesday 12th May, at 6.00 pm at the Society of Antiquaries

The Annual Woolf Jade Lecture and drinks reception

Dr. Jason Sun

A Passion for Jade: Heber Bishop and His Collection


This lecture introduces Heber Bishop, a prominent industrialist and patron of art, and his collection of jade and hardstone carvings that was assembled in the late Nineteenth century and bequeathed to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1902.  It presents the sophisticated art of Chinese lapidaries of the Qing dynasty and their aesthetic ideals by examining a selection of the most refined works from the collection.


Zhixin Jason Sun is Curator of Chinese Art in the Department of Asian Art of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.  He received his doctoral degree in Chinese Art and Archaeology from Princeton University.  Since joining the Metropolitan in 1999, he has curated several exhibitions, including “Bishop Jades (2006)”, “Excellence and Elegance: Decorative Art of the Eighteenth Century Qing Court (2007)”, “Small Delight: Chinese Snuff Bottles (2012)”, and “Colors of the Universe: Chinese Hardstone Carvings (2013)”, and also worked with James Watt on two seminal exhibitions “China: Dawn of a Golden Age (2004)”, and “The World of Khubilai Khan: Chinese Art in the Yuan Dynasty (2010)”.  He has lectured and published widely on a variety of subjects including Chinese jade carving, metalwork, calligraphy, archaeology, and museum studies.


This lecture will be followed by a reception with canapés and drinks at the Society of Antiquaries, kindly sponsored by Jonathan Woolf, to which all members are warmly invited.






For OCS members only, a special viewing of the Woolf Collection of Imperial Chinese Jades will be available on the day of the lecture, between 11:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. at Wessex House, 1 Chesham Street, London, SW1X 8ND.  Entry is free but by advance tickets only.  Contact Mary Painter by telephone on + 44 (0) 1223 881328 or email to for registration.






The Oriental Ceramic Society AGM

Tuesday 16th June


The AGM will start promptly at 5:30 p.m. and will be followed by the lecture and a reception with canapés and drinks sponsored by Sotheby’s

Dr Liu Yang

Picturing the Daoist Grotto Heavens



Future lecture dates for 2015: 


13th October: Louise Tythacott on the Summer Palace, Peking

6th November: OCS Asia Week lecture

8th December: George de Menasce Memorial Lecture, Nikolaos Vryzidis


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Visit to the Museum of East Asian Art in Bath

Thursday 12th February

A guided tour of their collection of Asian art plus a handling session of Qing wares including Imperial and export wares; also European copies of Chinese and Japanese porcelain.  This event is now fully booked.


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Visit to the Museum of East Asian Art in Bath

Thursday 12th February

A guided tour of their collection of Asian art plus a handling session of Qing wares including Imperial and export wares; also European copies of Chinese and Japanese porcelain.  This event is now fully booked.


Visit to the Butler Family Collection in Dorset

Friday 27th February, 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. including a sandwich lunch

Katharine Butler has very kindly offered to show a small group of OCS members her late father’s collection.  This visit is strictly for members only and numbers will be very limited. Details of the address will be given to those members who are successful.  Please complete the booking form at the end of this programme. If the visit is oversubscribed, there is the possibility of a second visit in the future.


Visit to The Cotswold Farm House 

Saturday 9th May

Meeting time: 11:00 a.m.


The Cotswold Farm House, near Cirencester, is owned by Iona Birchall, a relation by marriage of J. Dearman Birchall, who collected Chinese porcelain from 1860 to 1900.  It is a large collection, well displayed in the early 18th century farmhouse which has been extended in the Arts and Crafts style.  There are over 200 pieces, mainly Kangxi and some late Ming, mostly kraak, plus some Japanese pieces, mostly blue and white, also some stunning garnitures – basically what would be called ‘export wares’.  The house itself is lovely and the garden beautiful. 


Colin Sheaf is familiar with the collection and has kindly agreed to join us and introduce the collection to our members.  Iona will provide a soup and sandwich lunch for £15.00 per head.  Please complete the booking form at the end of this programme and send it with your cheque. 





Art Asia is offering a special discount for OCS members of 30% off the retail price of their beautiful Chinese language publication of Chinese Ceramics: Highlights of the Sir Percival David Collection.

Originally published in English by the British Museum, Chinese Ceramics: Highlights of the Sir Percival David Collection is co-authored by Regina Krahl, President of The Oriental Ceramic Society and International Research Consultant at Sotheby’s and Jessica Harrison-Hall, Curator of the Sir Percival David Collection and Chinese Ceramics and Vietnamese Art at the British Museum. The book provides a stunning overview, highlighting 50 groups of ceramics from almost 1,700 objects of this world-renowned collection.


The Chinese language version published by Art Asia was translated by Baoping Li, Senior International Researcher and Director at Sotheby's and Wei Huang, lecturer at the Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute. The Chinese language version is a hard back copy which has expanded on the original English version to include more and enlarged pictures of this exquisite ceramics collection.


•          Dimensions: 230mm x 290mm

•          Pages: 180

•          Photos: 200


Art Asia is offering OCS members a special discount price of £33.99 (retail price: £49.97). 

To order, please email quoting your OCS membership or call 02076365542.



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International Centre for Chinese Heritage and Archaeology (ICCHA), Institute of Archaeology, University College London holds regular lectures to which the public are warmly invited.  Lectures are held at the Archaeology Lecture Theatre (G6), Institute of Archaeology, UCL,  31-34 Gordon Square, London, WC1H 0PY.  Tel: 020 7679 1092.


Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts & Cultures and Centre for Japanese Studies, UEA

Thursday Lecture Series supported by the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation and the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Charitable Trust.  Admission free, advance booking recommended by phone 01603 597507 or email:  Web site:  Lectures start at 6:00 p.m.  Venue: Norwich Cathedral Hostry (Weston Room), Norwich NR1 4EH


Islamic Art Circle at SOAS

Lectures are regularly held in the Khalili Lecture Theatre (Main School Lecture Theatre), Philips Building, SOAS, University of London, Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H OXG.  For further information contact Rosalind Wade Haddon on 07714087480 or email to



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Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG.  Tel: +44 (0)207 323 8181.

The Sir Joseph Hotung Centre for Ceramic Studies housing the Sir Percival David Collection of Chinese Ceramics; The Joseph E Hotung Gallery of Oriental Antiquities from China, India, South Asia and Southeast Asia; the Mitsubishi Corporation Japanese Galleries; Arts of Korea: The Korea Foundation Gallery; 7000 Years of Chinese Jade from the Collection of Sir Joseph Hotung: The Selwyn and Ellie Alleyne Gallery; The John Addis Islamic Gallery.



Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL.  0207 942 2000.

Toshiba Gallery of Japanese Art and Design; T. T. Tsui Gallery of Chinese Art; Samsung Gallery of Korean Art; Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art.



Beaumont Street, Oxford OX1 2PH.  Tel: +44 (0)1865 278000.  Fax: +44 (0)1865 278018

Open Tue. – Sun. and Bank Holidays, 10.00 – 6.00. Closed 24th -26th December and 1st January.


Hiroshige's Japan: Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido Road

Gallery 29, 9 Dec – 19 Feb 2015

Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) was one of the great masters of the Japanese landscape print and his most famous series was the Fifty-three Stages of the Tokaido, first published in 1833.  Full of details of travellers' experiences of the journey between the cities of Edo and Kyoto, the series captured brilliantly the effects of place, weather and season.


Bengal and Modernity: Early 20th-century Art in India

Gallery 29, 2 Mar ‒ 1 Jun 2015

In the early 20th century, a wave of nationalism swept across the Indian subcontinent. In Bengal, several artists focused on revitalizing Indian cultural history and spirituality, deliberately turning away from academic expressions of realism practised in the various British art schools in India.

Yoshida Hiroshi: A Japanese Artist in India 

Prints from the Collection of Avijit and Chobi Lahiri

Gallery 29, 9 Jun ‒ 14 Sept 2015

In 1930 Japanese printmaker Yoshida Hiroshi (1876–1950) spent several months travelling in India and Southeast Asia. After his return to Japan he produced a series of woodblock prints inspired by his travels. A leading figure in the Shin-hanga (new print) movement that contributed to the revival of traditional Japanese printmaking in the early 1900s, he was particularly skilful at depicting the effects of light and water.



Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 1JF.  Tel: 0131 247 4026. 



Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1RB.  Tel: 01223 332900.  Closed Mondays. 

The Oriental Gallery of Chinese and Japanese Art and the Gompertz Gallery of Korean Art. 


12 Bennett Street Bath, BA1 2QJ: Tel. 01225 464640. 


Two new exhibitions open on 17th January until 31st May, 2015:-

Music in China explores various aspects of music in China and the importance of music to the different levels of Chinese society.

A Disappearing Culture: The Amis Earthenware Tradition in Taiwan.  The Amis are the largest and only remaining matriarchal aboriginal indigenous tribe in Taiwan, who create earthenware using traditional methods. 



Queens Road, Bristol BS8 1RL, Tel: 0117 922 3571


Ahead of the Curve: new china from China until 1 March 2015

Direct from China, a ground-breaking exhibition of ceramics and glass by 20 contemporary artists including Zhang Jingjing, Wan Liya and Wang Qin.  A programme of related events and workshops for schools will take place at each museum.



Bethesda Street, City Centre, Stoke-on-Trent, ST1 3DW. Tel: 01782 232323


Ahead of the Curve: New china from China, 14 March – 31 May 2015.

An exhibition of contemporary Chinese ceramics and glass.


In conjunction with the exhibition a symposium about contemporary Chinese ceramics and glass New china from China will be held at The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent on Friday 17th April 2015, 10.30 am – 6 pm. Tickets £30 (£15 concessions and students). For further details please contact Alexandra Nachescu on


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The TEFAF Maastricht 2015 Art & Antiques Fair will run from 13th – 22nd March at the Maastricht Exhibition & Congress Centre, Forum 100, 6229 GV Maastricht, The Netherlands. 


The British Antique Dealers’ Association (BADA) Antiques & Fine Art Fair will run from 18th – 24th March at the Duke of York Square, Chelsea, London, SW3 4LY.  Go to or or Tel +44 (0) 20 7589 6108. 


Art Antiques London, a fair arranged by Haughton International Fairs, will take place from 11th – 18th June on the Albert Memorial West Lawn, Kensington Gardens, SW7, opposite the Royal Albert Hall.  For details go to or email to or telephone +44 (0) 20 7389 6555. Complimentary tickets available for OCS members. 


The Antiques Dealers Fair Limited is holding various fine art and antiques fairs in 2015.  Tickets and enquiries: +44 (0)1797 252030.


Penman Fairs are pleased to send OCS members complimentary tickets to their antiques fairs.  Go to, email or telephone 01886 833091.



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Bonham’s, 101 New Bond Street, London W1S 1SR.  Tel: 020 7468 8248

21st April  Islamic and Indian Art

14th May Fine Chinese Art

14th May Fine Japanese Art

9th June Islamic and Indian Art

11th June Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art


Bonhams, Montpelier Street, Knightsbridge, SW7 1HH.  Tel: 020 7393 3943

25th February Asian Art

11th May Asian Art


Bonhams Edinburgh

25th March Asian Art


Christie’s, 8 King Street, London SW1Y 6QT.   Tel: 0207 389 2574

?12th May Fine Chinese Ceramics & Works of Art


Christie’s, 85 Old Brompton Road, London SW7 3LD.  Tel: 020 7930 6074

12th & 15th May Chinese Ceramics, Works of Art & Textiles


Sotheby’s, 34-35 New Bond Street, London W1A 2AA.   020 7293 6442

13th May Fine Chinese Ceramics & Works of Art


Chiswick Auctions

10th February Fine Asian Art

5th May Fine Asian Art


Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions, London

19th May Chinese Ceramics & Asian Works of Art


Duke’s Auctioneers, Dorchester

15th May Fine Asian Art


Woolley & Wallis, Salisbury

20th & 21st May Fine Chinese Ceramics and Other Asian Works of Art


Bonhams Hong Kong

23rd May Fine Chinese Works of Art


Christie's Hong Kong


Sotheby’s Hong Kong

First week of April – dates to be confirmed


Bonhams New York

16th March Fine Chinese Art from the Scholar’s Studio

17th March South East Asian Art

18th March Fine Japanese & Korean Works of Art


Christie’s New York

15th & 16th March Fine Ceramics & Works of Art

16th March 17th century Chinese Porcelains from the Collection of Julia & John Curtis

17th March Fine Chinese Paintings

17th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st March The Collection of Robert Hatfield Ellsworth Parts I – VI

22nd April American Collecting of Japanese Art


Sotheby’s New York

17th & 18th March Fine Chinese Ceramics & Works of Art


Christie’s Paris

9th June Art d’Asie


Sotheby’s Paris

10th June Arts d’Asie


Bonhams San Francisco

3rd March Asian Decorative Arts

23rd June Fine Asian Works of Art

24th June Asian Decorative Arts

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Useful Links:  - Southeast Asian Ceramic Society, Singapore.  - The Oriental Ceramic Society, Hong Kong.  - The Oriental Ceramic Society, Portugal.  - The Asian Arts Society of Australia.  - The Museum of East Asian Art, Bath, U.K.  - The Oxford Ceramics Group, U.K.
  - The Oriental Ceramic Society of Sweden.   - Washington Oriental Ceramic Group   - Asian Art Society of New England   - The Oriental Ceramic Society, Norway   - The Oriental Ceramic Society, Norway   - Asian Art in London - Gala Party

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Patron: HRH  The Duke of Gloucester G.C.V.O