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“Hiratemae” imperial tea set used during the summer season

Chaji may last for several hours and during this time guests have the opportunity to taste thick koicha tea and light usucha tea, as well as to refresh themselves with a light dish or to taste sweets. All the elements are chosen specifically for such a meeting. In terms of form and motif, utensils should match the season and the occasion. Even the dishes reflect the seasonal characteristics of nature. When speaking about uniqueness of each chaji, the Japanese use a phrase ichigo ichie, meaning: the only meeting like this in life, and the cultivation of this lifestyle is called the Tea Way.

“Hydria” apothecary vase

A hydria type apothecary vase. Majolica. Savona (Italy). The 2nd half of the 17th century. Handles in the shape of (fantastic) animal heads on massive bent necks. In the front, at the bottom, there is a relief of a gargoyle. In its mouth there is an opening to pour out the content of the vase, plugged with a standard cork. There are smaller gargoyles without openings on the sides of the vessel, under the handles.

Statue of Augustus III Wettin

The statue is modelled on a portrait painted in 1737 by Louis de Silvestre, the court painter of Augustus III. The sculpture was designed by Johann Joachim Kändler in 1740, on the request of Heinrich, Count von Brühl; the sculpting work was completed in the autumn of 1741 and was carried out in cooperation with Johann Friedrich Eberlein and with the assistance of Johann Gottlieb Ehder.

Ceramic tile “Maryna’s discipline”

Ceramic corner tile taken from a clay stove, the so-called heater. It was made by the pottery workshop of Jan Oksitowicz, a potter enrolled in the Kraków guild in 1832. The tile comes from a stove which existed even in the interwar period in one of the Kraków tenement houses belonging to the Tarnowski family. After World War II, the stove stood in the former residence of this family in Dzików near Tarnobrzeg, from where, dismantled, it found its way to Kraków again.

Pre Columbian bowl

This three-coloured bowl on an annular foot, decorated with so-called negative painting, using wax as a reserve material, belongs to the pre-Columbian Carchi-Nariño highland culture from the border of today's Ecuador and Colombia, dating back to around 700 or 800 AD and 1500 AD.

Tiled stove, so-called amorial with coats of arms

The stove was manufactured in the maiolica factory in Nieborów, which was established in 1881 by Prince Michał Radziwiłł. It comes from the destroyed mansion in Krzyszkowice near Myślenice and it was renovated in 1977.

“Terra sigillata” vessel

The terra sigillata vessel in the form of a bowl on a foot comes from the cremation tomb accidentally discovered in Lisów (Opatów district). The vessel was imported from a province of the Roman Empire. The form of the vessel is typical of the pottery workshop in Rheinzabern (south-western Germany), the largest centre producing vessels of this type in the northern provinces of the Roman Empire (Germania Superior), operating in 190–220. The vessel was made of clay, sealed in the matrix with a negative decoration, and subsequently baked in a furnace in the pottery workshop of Primitivus I.

Porcelain salt cellar with a figure of black woman with a basket

This is a figurine-shaped porcelain salt shaker with a container for salt. A very decorative figure of black woman with a basket was created in the oldest European porcelain workshop in Meissen, near Dresden. It was made according to the model developed by Johann Friedrich Eberlein in 1741.

Apothecary majolica vessel — “albarello”

Majolikowe naczynie apteczne typu albarello, eliptycznie wklęsłe, powstało w Faenzie (Włochy) w połowie XVI wieku. Dekoracja figuralno-roślinna w kolorach niebieskim, zielonym, żółtym i pomarańczowym; postać ludzka to zielarka z chustą na zioła na plecach. Napis na banderoli: Aloe patico...

Clay vessel from Bilche Zolote

The vessel is part of the rich collection of monuments from Bilcze Złote, from the Werteba Cave. The objects come from excavations, conducted with breaks from 1876 to 1907, by Adam Honory Kirkor, Gotfryd Ossowski, and Włodzimierz Dematrykiewicz. The collections of Prince Leon and Teresa Sapieh were handed over by agreement in 1904 to the Museum of Skills Academy in Kraków.

Small vase “kantharos”

In the Korzec collection in Tarnów, which numbers 450 inventory items, a small vase of the kantharos type deserves special attention. Vases of this type served as decorations and were produced on the occasion of anniversaries or other events. The excellent quality of the product and the elegance of its form and decorations prove the high level of manufacturing quality in the 1st two decades of the 19th century. In Polish museum collections, a similar small vase can be found in the collection of the National Museum in Warsaw.

Sculpture of Augustus III

A statue of Frederick Augustus II, the Elector of Saxony, and King of Poland, Augustus III, on horseback. It is an example of cabinet sculpture. Similar portrayals of Louis XIV, Napoleon Bonaparte and Marcus Aurelius, often made in bronze, were popular in the 2nd half of the century.

Zoomorphic vessel (Chancay Culture)

The vessel comes from the 1876 Peruvian collection of Władysław Kluger. The hollow, zoomorphic figurine most likely represents a llama. It was made of a ceramic material, then coated with a light-coloured slip and white paint, which is most noticeable on the muzzle of the animal.

“Hanaire” flower vase used to decorate tea ceremonies

A Hanaire [花入], which is a flower vase used during the tea ceremony, can have many forms — standing, hanging, with a broad spout, or imitating a thin bamboo stem. Hanaire creators are not limited in terms of materials they can use, either. In tea rooms, one can encounter vases made of wicker, hollow calabash, and every kind of ceramic. Those lighter materials are used during summer gatherings; while heavier ones are chosen in winter.

Porcelain vase with a wooden base

What do a cobalt vase and a Japanese emperor have in common? This vase is a gift from the Japanese court donated to the Manggha Museum during the visit of the Japanese emperor, Akihito, and his wife, Michiko, on 11 July 2002. This porcelain vase with a wooden base is ornamented with the imperial chrysanthemum – an emblem representing the imperial title in Japan.

Frog-shaped vessel

The vessel comes from the collection of Władysław Kluger, it is from 1876. Anatomical details of the frog and decorations made ​​in the form of zigzags are painted with red paint around the vessel.

Zoomorphic vessel (Chimú culture)

The vessel comes from the collection of Władysław Kluger from 1876. It has two circular bellies and two beaks: one in the shape of a bird’s head, the other one tall and straight, both conjoined with a curved handle. On the belly, there are panels with straps of...

Anthropomorphic vessel

The vessel comes from the collection of Władysław Kluger from 1876. A vessel with a high neck and a vertical vice. The nose, eyes and ears, and modelled lips have been glued to the neck of the vessel.

Majolica apothecary vessel

The maiolica pharmacy jug is decorated with an orange, blue, and green plant ornament. It is worth noting the unusual handle – parallel (not perpendicular) to the jug’s body – thanks to which it was possible to lift and carry such a large and heavy vessel using a lowered hand. Under the handle, there is a mascaron head, resembling that of a lion.

Ai Weiwei, “Oil spills”

This is a ceramic work – a technique that is inseparable from Chinese culture. The porcelain objects were fired in Jingdezhen, a city famous for its ceramics. The six elements in the MOCAK Collection, which simulate crude oil stains, are part of a 25-part installation. The work is a commentary on contemporary economic conditioning. Oil – a resource that impacts on international politics – symbolically stains the world.