Ceramics History (Scroll down to find the Culture that is due)


Homework Template
  • These homework assignments are designed to help you understand the long history of ceramics.
  • Each assignment, you need to find a ceramic work relating to the subject/era assigned online or in a magazine. Try:
The Peabody Exxex Museum: http://www.pem.org/museum/
The Metropolitan Museum of Art http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/splash.htm

A. Spend some time looking for images from the required time period. You might start by googling: "Mesopotamia ceramics," for instance. Find one you like. It should NOT always be the first one that you find! (I can easily find that one, too...) Print your chosen work in color, cut it out, and neatly glue the image in your sketchbook.
B. Underneath or next to the image, write the title/name of the object, the artist, the date, and the place of origin of that work. (important!!!)
C. Write the source of your information in MLA format (use EasyBib or NoodleBib)
D. Then answer the following questions about it:
  1. Where and when was your ceramic object created?
  2. Describe the physical appearance of your object (size, shape, color, texture, etc.)
  3. Describe the method of construction of this object and what brings you to this conclusion. (Is it pinch, coil, slab, wheel thrown, or a combination)
  4. How is the surface treated? (Glazed, unglazed, texture added, decorative elements attached, pattern pressed in, etc…)
  5. What is the function of this object? (you might read this or you might have to guess; if you guess, please tell what makes you make this assumption)
  6. In regards to the form and/or decoration, compare this object to something you see or use today.
    Describe how the two objects relate.

Please type up this information and tape or glue it onto the page along with the photo of your image. All assignments MUST be taped or glued into your sketchbook and should be in order. It might help to put the image on one page and the information on the opposite page. Please see the examplars in the classroom.

Possible Historical era/subjects to be studied:
Mesopotamian Pottery (ca 4500 - 2500 BC) British Museum MFA Boston Met Museum (type "mesopotamian ceramics" into the search box)
Egyptian Pottery (ca. 3000 - 1000 BC) British Museum MFA Boston Met Meseum
Banshan ware, China (3rd millennium BC) Philadelphia Museum of Art
Jomon period, Japan (circa 14,500–300 BC) Philadelphia Museum Met Museum (type "jomon" into the search box, click on the "37 Historical Timeline Results" click on "10 works of art on the timeline," scroll down and be sure to find CLAY!) British Museum Peabody Essex Museum (type jomon into the search box), Ceramics Monthly article
Minoan (2500-11 BC) Met Museum (type "minoan" into the search box) British Museum (check the related pots on the right side)

Shang Dynasty (1600 – 1100 BC) Philadelphia Museum of Art, Met Museum (type "shang dynasty into the search box, click through timeline results to works of art on the time line), The Pottery Gallery

Olmec (1200 – 500 BC) British Museum de Young Museum
Chavin Culture, Northern Peru (1100-400 BC)
Africa (300 BC – 1400 AD)
Greek Pottery (ca. 500 BC)
China Terra Cotta Warriors (300-200 BC) Nat'l Geographic Info on Forming Terra Cotta Warrior Museum Imperial Tours About.com
Silla Period, Korea (200 – 650 AD)
Majollica, Italy, Renaissance (14th-17th century AD)
Arts & Crafts Movement, America or Europe, 19th-20th century AD
Contemporary Ceramics