Lot 3207
  • 3207


100,000 - 150,000 HKD
125,000 HKD
bidding is closed


  • ceramics
of conical form, the thinly-potted vessel with wide flaring sides rising from a slightly tapered foot to an everted rim, exquisitely carved to the interior with two boys dressed in loose robes, amongst a lush ground of scrolling peonies, the petals with furled edges and freely incised with stylised wavy veins, applied overall with a transparent glaze with a bluish tinge pooling to a deeper tone in the recesses, the glaze stopping neatly at the foot, the unglazed base fired to a buffed tone at the centre


Susan Chen, Hong Kong, 1988.

Catalogue Note

Qingbai bowls decorated with the popular 'boys' motif can be found in many important museums and private collections. Compare a larger bowl, carved with the design of boys among vines, in the Seattle Art Museum, illustrated in Basil Gray, Sung Porcelain and Stoneware, London, 1984, pl. 124; two examples excavated at the Hutian kiln site in Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province, published in Chai Kiln and Hutian Kiln, Nanning, 2004, pp. 94 and 95; and a fourth bowl in the Avery Brundage Collection, Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, illustrated in Stacey Pierson, ed., Qingbai Ware: Chinese Porcelain of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, London, 2002, pl. 7.

A bowl of this design, excavated from a tomb in Yihuang county, Jiangxi province, dated in accordance with 1201 AD, and now preserved in the Jiangxi Provincial Museum, is illustrated in Peng Shifan, ed., Dated Qingbai Wares of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, Hong Kong, 1998, pl. 65; and another in the Palace Museum, Beijing, is published in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Porcelain of the Song Dynasty (II), Hong Kong, 1996, pl. 182. A similar bowl, but also larger in size, from the Eugene Bernat Collection, was sold in these rooms, 7th November 1980, lot 78; another from the Lindberg Collection was sold in our London rooms, 12th December 1978, lot 208; and a third from the Pilkington Collection recently sold in these rooms, 6th April 2016, lot 81.

Pierson, op. cit., p. 40, notes that the motif of two boys playing amid stylised floral scrolls symbolises the wish for many sons. It is also mentioned (p. 40) that for the decoration of this type of bowl a stencil was used which led to uniformity in the replication of the broad, undecorated rim and is reasonable to assume that the design was popular and manufactured in some quantity.