3636
3636
A RARE YELLOW JADE ARCHAISTIC 'MYTHICAL BEAST' VASE AND COVER
QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY
Estimate
1,200,0001,800,000
LOT SOLD. 16,320,000 HKD
JUMP TO LOT
3636
A RARE YELLOW JADE ARCHAISTIC 'MYTHICAL BEAST' VASE AND COVER
QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY
Estimate
1,200,0001,800,000
LOT SOLD. 16,320,000 HKD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Important Chinese Art

|
Hong Kong

A RARE YELLOW JADE ARCHAISTIC 'MYTHICAL BEAST' VASE AND COVER
QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY
the substantial boulder skilfully worked after a guang vessel, resting atop a recumbent mythical beast with its head turned backwards, the vessel centred with a protruding section resting on a splayed foot and surmounted by a tall flaring neck tapering into a rounded spout on one side, the other with a handle in the form of an archaistic kui dragon, the central section further decorated in low relief with stylised archaistic birds rendered in scrollwork, the design echoed on the exterior of the well-fitted domed cover, all below a facetted finial, the stone of a warm attractive yellow colour with russet patches and celadon inclusions, wood stand
23.1 cm, 9 1/8  in.
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Provenance

Acquired from Sakamoto Gorō in 2007.

Catalogue Note

Finely carved in the round in the form of an animal carrying a ewer on its back, this charming piece displays the Qianlong Emperor’s penchant for innovative objects that were rooted in archaism. Vessels of this type are often unique and no other closely related example appears to have been published. Compare a vessel modelled in the form of a mythological animal standing on four feet and carrying a vase on its back, in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, illustrated in Masterworks of Chinese Jade in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, 1973, pl. 29; and one modelled with the animal crouching and turning its head backwords, offered at Christie’s London, 1st December 1997, lot 23.

Yellow jade vessels of this impressive size are extremely rare due to the rarity of such large boulders of even tone and quality. Since the Ming dynasty yellow jade was recognised by scholars and connoisseurs as one of the most valued variations of nephrite. In his miscellany Yanxian Qingshang [Refined Enjoyment of Elegant Leisure], the dramatist Gao Lian (fl. 1573-1581) noted, "Of all jade materials, yellow stones with a mellow tone are the best and mutton-white ones come second". Because of its rarity, the brownish skin was often worked into the piece, as seen on the front legs of the mythical creature, to increase its overall size and show the carver’s respect for the rare and valuable material.

Important Chinese Art

|
Hong Kong