The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Dish
  • Dish
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Iznik, Turkey
  • c. 1560 - 1570
  • Fritware, painted and glazed.
  • Diameter: 47.4 cm
  • C199
  • Smoking Room
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • This beautiful dish is wonderfully evocative of the sixteenth-century Ottoman court culture in which Iznik ceramics flourished. At its centre, the glorious turquoise background, suggesting perhaps a brilliant summer sky, is a perfect foil for the fantastical stylised peacock amidst flowers and foliage. The delightful decoration in the border, comprising split palmettes interwoven with flowers and leaves, both frames and extends the peacock’s flower-bedecked domain. The distinctive red, standing out in relief, was a recent addition to the Iznik palette, which became more vivid from around mid-century. A key element in the popularity of Iznik ceramics was the strong, clean white ground. The inclusion of a bird at the centre of an Iznik dish is very unusual at this early date.