The Korea Herald

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Joseon moon jar fetches record price at Christie's

By Park Yuna

Published : March 23, 2023 - 11:21

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A white porcelain moon jar from the 18th century (CHRISTIE'S IMAGES LTD. 2023) A white porcelain moon jar from the 18th century (CHRISTIE'S IMAGES LTD. 2023)

A white porcelain moon jar from the 18th century fetched $4.5 million at Christie’s “Japanese and Korean Art” sale, the highest price fetch at auction by a moon jar. The sale was held Tuesday in New York.

The British auction house explained that Joseon era porcelain was the highest quality moon jar put up for auction in at least 10 years.

Owned by a Japanese private collector, the moon jar's estimated sale price was between $1 million and $2 million, according to preview information released by Christie's in February.

“Moon jars grew in popularity for a variety of reasons, but much of their importance derived from the fact that they embodied core Confucian ideals. Their anonymous white surface portrayed a sense of purity, while the decision to not decorate them showed restraint on the part of the artist, who resisted filling their surface with imagery,” the auctioneer said.

Nineteen artworks were sold at the auction including the moon jar, the total value amounting to $58.4 million. The moon jar was unveiled during a preview session at Christie’s Korea in February.