Wucai was a popular type of porcelain during the Kangxi reign (1662-1722) of the Qing Dynasty and regained its popularity in the Guangxu reign (1875-1908). It involved adding polychrome paint to white-glazed or blue-and-white porcelain. A pair of Wucai bowls is a good example of the latter.
On the outer sides of the bowls, there are paintings that depict the Battle of Feishui that took place in 383 between the Eastern Jin (317-420) and the Former Qin (337-385). Instead of depicting the battlefield, the painting is a rather serene scene that shows Xie An, the commander-in-chief, receiving a victory message while playing chess with his friend. Upon hearing the news, he appears quite calm instead of showing excitement. But what is left unpainted, according to historical records, is that he shifts into wild joy after his friend leaves. He can’t help but dance in his room.
This porcelain not only has practical value, but also provides aesthetic and historical value. It is in the permanent collection of the Guanfu Museum.