50
50
An Exceptional 'Qiangjin' and 'Tianqi' Lacquer 'Wandai Shenghe' Double-Lozenge Box and Cover
Mark and Period of Qianlong
Estimate
1,500,0002,000,000
LOT SOLD. 1,840,000 HKD
JUMP TO LOT
50
An Exceptional 'Qiangjin' and 'Tianqi' Lacquer 'Wandai Shenghe' Double-Lozenge Box and Cover
Mark and Period of Qianlong
Estimate
1,500,0002,000,000
LOT SOLD. 1,840,000 HKD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

The Baoyizhai Collection of Chinese Lacquer, Part 1

|
Hong Kong

An Exceptional 'Qiangjin' and 'Tianqi' Lacquer 'Wandai Shenghe' Double-Lozenge Box and Cover
Mark and Period of Qianlong
modelled in the form of two overlapping lozenges with six cylindrical posts at the corners, the cinnabar lacquer finely incised and gilt in the qiangjin technique and further picked out in tianqi polychrome enamels with five children at play in a fenced garden terrace set with jagged rocks issuing peonies and a lofty aged tree, to the left a boy ride a hobby horse, while another masquerades as the God of examination Kuixing, and the third hits a gong, to the right another boy pulls a cart while his acolyte holds a ruyi sceptre, the sloping sides similarly decorated with wan symbols among multi-coloured clouds repeated above tempestuous green waves around the foot, the straight sides picked out with a floral-diaper ground and descending bats on the cylindrical posts, the base lacquered red and inscribed in gilt Wandai shenghe ('Double Lozenge Box of Myriad Generations') below a six-character incised horizontal reign mark
width 31.7 cm., 12 1/2  in.
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Exhibited

2000 Years of Chinese Lacquer. Oriental Ceramic Society of Hong Kong and the Art Gallery, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 1993, cat. no. 88.
Layered Beauty: The Baoyizhai Collection of Chinese Lacquer, Art Museum, Institute of Chinese Studies, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, 2010, cat. no. 23.

Catalogue Note

For a Jiajing reign-marked double-lozenge shaped covered box from the Qing Court Collection and still in Beijing, see The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Lacquer Wares of the Yuan and Ming Dynasties, Hong Kong, 2006, p.193, no. 151 (fig.1). See also a Longqing reign-marked example decorated with dragons and floral borders in the Barber Institute, Birmingham, illustrated by Harry Garner, Chinese Lacquer, London, 1979, pl. 136. These 16th century examples were no doubt the inspiration to the whole group of Qianlong versions, including the current covered box, the Jiajing example is decorated in qiangji and tianqi with a dragon and phoenix amidst flaming clouds. 

For an identical Qianlong reign-marked covered box, see the example in the Tokyo National Museum, illustrated in Oriental Lacquer Arts, Tokyo National Museum, Tokyo, 1977, no. 585. A smaller unmarked cinnabar-lacquer covered box, decorated with boys at play, was sold in these rooms, 25th April 2004, lot 324.

The decoration on the surface is intricately rendered, a highly auspicious profusion of fortuitous symbols emblematic of happiness, prosperity and longevity, including wan symbols, bats and lingzhi. The four-character expression Wandai shenghe ('Double Lozenge Box of Myriad Generations') celebrates future fecundity. The Qianlong artisans have skilfully taken the double-lozenge shaped box from the Jiajing period, with its auspicious, yet more austerely rendered decoration of a dragon and phoenix in more restrained colours, and created a sumptuously decorated and exuberant version abundant in images and emblems fashionable at the Qianlong court. 

The Baoyizhai Collection of Chinese Lacquer, Part 1

|
Hong Kong