This is a Xindian culture jar. Although it has a few dents, it is a perfect classic example. There is a hole in the bottom possibly from a probe, used to find hollow graves under the ground.
The Xindian culture is dated ca. 1500-1000 BC.It follows the Quijia culture. The sites are found along the Huang river.
It is made from a coarse clay, coil built, and thin walled. It is not scraped to thin it, but it shows indentations of a support mould. Possibly a woven basket that supported the underside when forming the pot. The theory is that the clay was beated thin with paddles when it was leathery hardened.
The painted design is a yoke-shape, classicly found on Xindian wares. There is much debate of what it is. Is it a Yoke, a bull, or an abstract shape ?
The piece provenances from Marvin Sadik, recently deceased, who was an important collector and private dealer in Maine, and was formerly the director of several museums including the National Portrait Gallery.