Figure 1: The Blue Willow Pattern first popularized by Minton (1) in 1780, and readily available at your local Woolworths.
This research project was initiated as a response questions from Master Crispin regarding blue on white ceramics at Fields of Gold 2014. I knew the basics such as the significant influence of Chinese (Ming)ware on the European market but I didn't know if this was a stylistic influence or something else. (turns out it's practical, higher firing temperature creates stronger ceramics and cobalt is stable at these temperatures). Given that 'Blue on White' is a wide topic I started as I usually do, hitting up my favourite museum collections for some extant samples. I've stored these on pinterest, tried to assemble a small collection of representative pieces and a timeline. I've also collected quotes from various sources that relate to the pieces above them. For some reason vases seemed to be a thing and it's interesting to see the motifs and shapes changing over time and cultures. This is a HUGE topic which I only touch on but I feel this research essay is sufficient generalist background as I conduct additional research for each project as well. Where possible I've utilized primary sources (extant objects) but have referenced a number of secondary or tertiary sources as well. Additional reference material is provided at the end and I've put this one behind a cut because it's a massive post and reasonably picture heavy.