PORCELAIN COVERED BOWL WITH METAL RIM, MADE IN CHINA (KILN UNKNOWN) FOR THE THAI MARKET, EARLY 19TH CENTURY, MOST LIKELY RAMA II PERIOD (1809-1824), 18CMS (D) X 12CMS (H). COLLECTION OF PAUL BROMBERG – TAASA Review December 2012

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This article was originally found in the December 2012 edition of TAASA Review (Volume 21, Issue 4, Page 13).

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Although substantial collections, mainly in storage, in two museums in Oslo, Norway, have been brought recently to the attention of a wider audience (Bromberg & Håbu 2011) and small numbers of items are held in museums in Sydney, London and Los Angeles as well as in the National Museum and some private collections in Thailand (Robinson 1982), the only comprehensive publicly accessible collection is held in Jim Thompson’s House on the Klong in Bangkok (Warren and Blake 1968; Rooney 2003).

This limited exposure is surprising given the growing domestic popularity of these distinctive ceramics and their increasing employment as gift-wares especially during the Thai new year.

However, there is a recent surge of publications and increasing interest among collectors and researchers of Asian ceramics and a public exhibition of the Oslo collections is planned for 2013. The term bencharong refers to a class of colourful porcelain, or occasionally stoneware, ceramics that occur in a variety of shapes similar to those of Chinese export wares...