This bowl is distinctive for its elegant shape and harmonious floral decoration which has been designed for a pure Chinese aesthetic and rendered in an intense cobalt blue. For examples of Xuande marked bowls of this pattern similarly adorned with anhua
slip decorated floral scrolls on the interior, see one in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, illustrated in Mingdai Xuande guanyao jinghua tezhan tulu/Catalogue of the Special Exhibition of Selected Hsüan-te Imperial Porcelains of the Ming Dynasty
, Taipei, 1998, cat. no. 61; and one in the Palace Museum, Beijing, published in Gugong Bowuguan cang Ming chu qinghua ci
[Early Ming blue-and-white porcelain in the Palace Museum], vol. 2, Beijing, 2002, pl. 142. See also a bowl sold in these rooms, 8th October 2013, lot 217 and another from the Edward T. Chow and Mr and Mrs Myron Falk collections, sold at Christie's New York, 15th October 2001, lot 135, and again in these rooms, 2nd May 2005, lot 506.
These bowls were inspired by earlier bowls of the Yongle reign, such as one from the Ardebil Shrine and now in the National Museum of Iran, Tehran, illustrated in John Alexander Pope, Chinese Porcelains from the Ardebil Shrine
, Washington, 1956, pl. 48, and again in Takatoshi Misugi, Chinese Porcelain Collections of the Near East, Topkapi and Ardebil
, vol. 3, Hong Kong, 1981, cat. no. A60.
This refined design was much admired by the Qianlong Emperor, who ordered precise copies of these Xuande bowls to be made by the imperial kilns. A Xuande bowl of this design was exhibited together with a Qianlong mark and period example, both from the Sir Percival David collection, in the exhibition, Elegant Form and Harmonious Decoration. Four Dynasties of Jingdezhen Porcelain, London, 1992, cat. nos 34 and 168.