Octagonal Jar with Eight Immortals
Vase (Meiping) with Eight Daoist Immortals
Artist/maker unknown, Chinese
The Eight Immortals—Daoist symbols of longevity and happiness—are depicted in inset panels around this vase. During the Yuan dynasty, this group of legendary figures was featured in literature and plays, accounting for its popularity in the visual arts. The panels were covered with wax before the vase was dipped in glaze and fired. When the wax melted away in the kiln, they turned the brick red color seen here—the result of the re-oxidization of the clay as it cooled.