LaunchPad: Porcelain Kendi, Part 2—Painting in Cobalt

This video was created for LaunchPad, a program of digital interpretive materials that supplement the viewing of works of art on display in the Art Institute of Chicago’s galleries.
Porcelain artist Yuki Nyhan demonstrates the painting of a kendi, the basic form of the Art Institute’s Chinese ewer. She paints botanical designs with cobalt pigment, using different brushes and pressure to create a variety of effects. After glazing, the kendi is fired to highlight the deep blue color. The result leaves no doubt as to why Europeans, enamored with the beauty of this porcelain, traveled thousands of miles to bring it home.


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