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Qianlong vases of this type are better known from copper-red decorated examples; see one illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Blue and White Porcelain with Underglazed Red (III), Shanghai, 2000, pl. 176; another sold in our Hong Kong rooms, 29th November 1978, lot 281; and one sold in these rooms, 12th June 2003, lot 183.
The decoration of a pair of flying phoenix confronting a flaming pearl above a peony bloom may be found on Qianlong mark and period wares of different shape; for example, see a moonflask from the Matsuoka Art Museum, Tokyo, illustrated in Sekai toji zenshu, vol. 15, Tokyo, 1983, pls. 92-3. Hu form vases of this type were also decorated with dragons as seen on the vase sold at Christie’s Hong Kong, 30th April 2000, lot 600, painted in puce and underglaze-blue enamels.
Porcelain vases of this type may have been inspired by contemporary jade examples; see a finely carved white jade vase of this shape and same design of two phoenixes and flowers, attributed to the Qianlong period and from the collection of the National Palace Museum, Taipei, included in the exhibition The Refined Taste of the Emperor: Special Exhibition of Archaic and Pictorial Jades of the Ch'ing Court, National Palace Museum, Taipei, 1996, cat. no. 25.
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