3621
3621
A RARE MING-STYLE BLUE AND WHITE FACETTED VASE
MARK AND PERIOD OF YONGZHENG
Estimate
800,0001,200,000
JUMP TO LOT
3621
A RARE MING-STYLE BLUE AND WHITE FACETTED VASE
MARK AND PERIOD OF YONGZHENG
Estimate
800,0001,200,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Important Chinese Art

|
Hong Kong

A RARE MING-STYLE BLUE AND WHITE FACETTED VASE
MARK AND PERIOD OF YONGZHENG
the square body with chamfered corners richly painted on each side in cobalt blue with a morning glory borne on a continuous foliate scroll, supported on a splayed foot encircled by a band of pendent ruyi-lappets enclosing floral sprays, the wide cylindrical neck decorated with similar elongated upright lappets below pendent trefoils and a key-fret border around the thick lipped rim, the neck further flanked by a pair of curved handles issuing from the mouths of moulded dragon heads with short horns, bulging eyes and sharp fangs, the base inscribed with a six-character reign mark within a double circle
17 cm, 6 3/4 in.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Christie's London, 3rd November 2009, lot 297.
Sotheby's Hong Kong, 9th October 2012, lot 3082.

Catalogue Note

This early Ming shape appears to have been a particular favourite of the Yongzheng Emperor, although the Ming prototypes mostly differ in design, with morning glories covering the whole vessel. Two extant handscrolls of the Yongzheng period, dated in accordance with 1728 and 1729, respectively, depicting works of art from the imperial collection include two such vases each, all four shown on different wooden stands; see Regina Krahl, 'Art in the Yongzheng Period: Legacy of an Eccentric Art Lover', Orientations, November/December 2005, pp. 65-66. A veritable 'portrait' of yet another such vase holding an auspicious branch of peony with twin blooms was executed by the court painter Giuseppe Castiglione; see Wang Yaoting, Xin shi jie. Lang Shining yu Qinggong xiyang feng/New Visions at the Ch'ing Court. Giuseppe Castiglione and Western-Style Trends, Taipei, 2007, pl. 16. In the exhibition catalogue of Shenbi danqing: Lang Shining lai hua sanbai nian tezhan/Portrayals from a Brush Divine: A Special Exhibition on the Tricentennial of Giuseppe Castiglione's Arrival in China, several 'morning glory' vases in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, are published alongside with details of Castiglione's painting and the Yongzheng handscrolls, Taipei, 2015, cat. no. I-13.

The complex geometric shape, which does not come naturally to a potter, was clearly influenced by metal prototypes, probably of Middle Eastern origin, where facetted shapes are not uncommon. Basil Gray, 'The Influence of Near Eastern Metalwork on Chinese Ceramics', Transactions of the Oriental Ceramic Society, vol. 18, 1940-41, pl. 6c and d, compares a porcelain vase of this form to an earlier Persian bronze rose-water sprinkler in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, which is illustrated and discussed also in Assadullah Souren Melikian-Chirvani, Islamic Metalwork from the Iranian World. 8th-18th Centuries, London, 1982, pl. 5.

A very similar vase of Yongzheng mark and period from the Qing court collection in the Palace Museum, Beijing, is illustrated in Geng Baochang, ed., Gugong Bowuyuan cang Ming chu qinghua ci [Early Ming blue-and-white porcelain in the Palace Museum], Beijing, 2002, vol. 2, pl. 186, together with a prototype of Xuande mark and period, vol. 1, pl. 83. Two similar vases were sold in these rooms: one on 31st October 2004, lot 181, the other from the Meiyintang collection, 5th October 2011, lot 30. A Yongzheng vase of this pattern decorated in overglaze-yellow and green enamels is in the Baur Collection, Geneva, illustrated in John Ayers, Chinese Ceramics in the Baur Collection, Geneva, 1999, vol. 2, pl. 212.

This design was in the Yongzheng period more common in a slightly different version, with scrolls of morning glory also covering the blank areas of the neck; compare an example of this design in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, included in the exhibition Ming Xuande ciqi tezhan mulu/Catalogue of a Special Exhibition of Hsuan-te Period Porcelain, Taipei, 1980, cat. no. 5.

Important Chinese Art

|
Hong Kong