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Details & Cataloguing

Important Chinese Art

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London

A RARE 'CIZHOU' SGRAFFIATO 'PEONY' VASE
NORTHERN SONG DYNASTY
the rounded sides rising from a spreading foot to a tall cylindrical neck and everted rim, freely carved through the layer of brown slip to the ivory layer beneath with three large peony blooms borne on a meandering leafy scroll, all above a lappet band at the base, covered in a transparent glaze
32.3 cm, 12 3/4  in.
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Provenance

Collection of Joseph Homberg.
Sotheby's London, 19th July 1949, lot 16.

Catalogue Note

Some of the most attractive Cizhou ware produced at the Cizhou kilns in northern China are arguably those decorated in this impressive and vividly contrasting black-and-white sgraffiato style, which was created through the application of two layers of slip. A layer of black slip was applied over white slip, which was later carefully incised and cut away to reveal the pristine white layer beneath and then covered by a layer of clear glaze. The confident bold lines of carved design, together with the colour scheme, are reminiscent of calligraphy and ink paintings and thus vessels such as the present would have been highly sought after by the literati.


Compare three slightly smaller vases of this form and similarly decorated with a peony scroll sold in these rooms: the first from the collections of William C. Alexander and Alfred Clark, 25th March 1975, lot 14, now in the Matsuoka Museum of Art, Tokyo, the second, 3rd July 1956, lot 17, and the third, 9th June 1992, lot 135.

Important Chinese Art

|
London