204
204
AN EXTREMELY RARE MOLDED SANCAI 'CIZHOU' PILLOW JIN - YUAN DYNASTY
Estimate
60,00080,000
JUMP TO LOT
204
AN EXTREMELY RARE MOLDED SANCAI 'CIZHOU' PILLOW JIN - YUAN DYNASTY
Estimate
60,00080,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Important Chinese Art

|
New York

AN EXTREMELY RARE MOLDED SANCAI 'CIZHOU' PILLOW JIN - YUAN DYNASTY
of rectangular section with a slightly concave sloping top, the top surface with a central panel finely incised with a lady leaning against the branch of a pine tree beside a lotus pond with a waterfall cascading from rockwork, framed on either side by a five-character couplet, the two long sides molded and carved with a mythical beast striding amidst lotus flowers and pads, the short sides with floral motifs, all richly applied and detailed with sancai glazes, the base unglazed
Width 14 7/8  in., 37.8 cm
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Mayuyama & Co. Ltd., Tokyo.
Nagao Art Museum, Tokyo, acc. no. 144.
Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo.
Chinese Ceramics Museum, Kyushu.

Exhibited

Sodai no tōji [Song ceramics], Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo, 1979, cat. no. 115.

Literature

Idemitsu Bijutsukan zhin zuroku. Chugoku toji / Chinese Ceramics in the Idemitsu Collection, vol. 3. Tokyo, 1987, pl. 560.

Catalogue Note

This pillow is notable for not only its deft delineation of the figural scene on the central panel flanked by two classical poetic verses, but also the bold decoration adorning the side. Ceramic pillows decorated with colorful sancai glaze have their roots in the Tang dynasty (618-906) and continued to be admired by the Jin and their conquerors, the Jurchens. The present piece, featuring a prominent central panel, encapsulates the characteristics of Jin dynasty (1115-1234) ceramic pillows from the Cizhou kiln of the Hebei province known for its carving and delicately incised lines, all of which endow a sense of three-dimensionality to the overall aesthetic of this piece.

Cizhou pillows decorated in the sancai palette with a figural scene from the Jin dynasty are rare, although one, originally attributed to the Song dynasty but now to the Jin dynasty, decorated with a scene of Xiaohe chasing Hanxin under the moonlight, excavated from the Fangshang district, Beijing, and now in the Capital Museum, Beijing, is illustrated in Shoudu bowuguan cangci xuan [Collection of Ceramics in the Capital Museum], Beijing, 1991, pl. 26; and a smaller pillow, decorated with two floral roundels in the central band, in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, is published in Rose Kerr, Song Dynasty Ceramics, London, 2004, pl. 71. See also two sancai pillows attributed to the thirteenth century, one depicting three ducks and the other with a flying bird, from the Yeung Wing Tak Collection, included in the Exhibition of Chinese Ceramic Pillows from Yeung Wing Tak Collection, Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, 1984, cat nos 116 and 117.

The two verses painted on each end of the pillow are derived from a five-character ‘regulated’ classic, Chou liuyuanwai jianji  by Yan Wei, a poet from the Jiangnan region active during the Dali reign (c. 766-779) the Tang dynasty. It may be translated as:

In the spring, the willow pond fills up
The sun sets late so the blossoms stay open for longer.

Important Chinese Art

|
New York