Lot 184
  • 184

Rare et importante gourde en porcelaine doucai Dynastie Qing, époque Qianlong (1736-1795)

80,000 - 120,000 EUR
103,500 EUR
bidding is closed


  • Porcelain
  • 49 cm, 19 3/8  in.
la panse globulaire aplatie se retrécissant pour former un piédouche et un col étranglé s'épanouissant en forme de bulbe, flanqué de deux anses en enroulement figurant des dragons stylisés, la surface entièrement peinte d'émaux multicolores cernés de bleu sous-couverte d'un décor enlevé de délicates branches noueuses chargées de pêches de longévité dans leur feuillage, visitées par deux grues, l'épaulement et le pied peints d'une bande de palmettes au-dessus de têtes de ruyi, le col souligné agrémenté de motifs géométriques sous une frise de grecques, le tout dans une palette de coloris très vifs, socle en bois (2)


Acquired in France in the late 19th century.
Thence in the family by descent.

Catalogue Note

The present moonflask is unusual in several ways: it is noteworthy for its impressive size, its unusually formed neck and its rare doucai design of cranes flying over fruiting peach trees. While the basic form takes its inspiration from early fifteenth century moonflasks, the pairing of this shape with a pronounced garlic-head mouth is rare. A related moonflask of similarly large size terminating with a similar garlic-head mouth, formerly in the Qing court collection, is illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Blue and White Porcelain with Underglazed Red (III), Shanghai, 2000, pl. 98. Like the present piece it is unmarked yet dated to the Yongzheng period. It is also similarly raised on a wide, generously flaring pedestal foot that supports the large body.

Like its form, the design is unusual and full of auspicious symbolism. Both cranes and peaches are associated with Daoism and symbolise longevity. When depicted together they represent the wish, ‘May the crane and peaches grant you one thousand years’. The pairing of these two motifs on Qing porcelains is rare. One of the few examples my be found on dishes similarly decorated in the doucai palette with a large peach enclosing a crane in flight and set against a shou character, compare an example illustrated in Kangxi Porcelain Wares from the Shanghai Museum Collection, Hong Kong, 1998, pl. 155. 

The strong and vibrant enamels of the doucai palette that are used to depict the different elements of this design are more commonly associated with porcelains of the Qianlong period. A rare moonflask decorated on both sides with intertwined branches of fruiting peach, pomenagrate and finger citron similarly outlined in underglaze blue and enamelled in strong tones of translucent green, bright yellow and opaque pink shading to a yellowish-green and iron-d of orange tone bearing a six-character Qianlong sealmark, formerly in the British Rail Pension Fund collection, was sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 16th May 1989, lot 87, where it is noted that another flask decorated with a similar design and in the same combination of enamels was sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 20th November 1982, lot 204.