Korean Ceramics Gallery (Goryeo Dynasty)

It goes without saying that the most outstanding ceramic ware of the Goryeo dynasty (918–1391) is celadon. It is considered that the origin of Goryeo celadon can be traced back to the time no later than the tenth century, when the production techniques of Yue celadon in China, which developed in the Five Dynasties period (907–960), was introduced to the Korean Peninsula, building a foundation for the subsequent developments. 
The production of Goryeo celadon reached its peak by the first half of the twelfth century, achieving the lustrous jade-color glaze. According to Gaoli Tujing (“The Illustrated Report on Goryeo”) written in 1123 by Xu Jing, a member of the Chinese delegation to the Goryeo capital Gaeseong, celadon wares were called bisaek(jade color)for their amazingly beautiful color and luster, esteemed higher than gilt or silver vessels. By the mid-twelfth century, celadon with inlaid decoration was achieved, which is said to be a distinctive technique of the Goryeo dynasty. A motif was carved or incised on a leather-hard clay body, into which red or white clay was filled and bisque fired. The body was then covered with a celadon glaze and re-fired. The black-and-white inlay pattern under the clear celadon glaze renders a vivid and elegant atmosphere. Such splendid works of celadon with a jade-colored glaze or inlaid decoration were produced mainly in regions such as Gangjin in Jeollanam-do and Buan in Jeollabuk-do. Various kinds of Goryeo celadon works with unique decorations were produced from the twelfth through the thirteenth centuries, including those with decorations in underglaze iron-brown paint, underglaze trailed white slip, underglaze copper-red paint, underglaze iron-brown slip coating and marbled clay body. Although few in number, white porcelain was also produced during this period.
While celadon with inlaid decoration was mass-produced until the end of the fourteenth century, the quality gradually fell into a state of decline. The technique was succeeded by the buncheong ware of the Joseon dynasty.