A RARE ROBIN'S-EGG GLAZED MALLET VASE SEAL MARK AND PERIOD OF YONGZHENG | 清雍正 爐鈞釉紙槌瓶 《雍正年製》款
PROPERTY FROM AN IMPORTANT ASIAN PRIVATE COLLECTION 亞洲重要私人收藏
Property from an Important Asian Private Collection
A RARE ROBIN'S-EGG GLAZED MALLET VASE
SEAL MARK AND PERIOD OF YONGZHENG
the well-proportioned body slightly tapering towards the foot, rising to a wide angled shoulder surmounted by a cylindrical neck, applied liberally overall with a brilliant opaque turquoise-blue glaze heightened with purplish-brown cascades, the recessed base incised with a four-character seal mark
16.1 cm, 6 ¼ in.
The vase is in very good condition with just insignificant surface wear and minute glaze flakes.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE.
It is extremely rare to find a Yongzheng ‘robin’s egg’ vase of this mallet form. Robin’s egg glaze is a bicolour glazing technique whereby the turquoise glaze was blown onto the blue-glazed vessel to produce a delicate stippled effect. It is also known as lujun or ‘furnace Jun’ in China due to the low temperature of the furnace when firing the glaze. Earlier examples were prone to streaking and unevenness in texture; therefore Yongzheng vases such as the present example are rare. Yongzheng mark and period vessels covered in a robin’s egg glaze include a miniature vase, from the Qing Court collection and still in Beijing, published in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Monochrome Porcelain, Hong Kong, 1999, pl. 187; and a rectangular jardinière sold in these rooms, 11th April 2008, lot 2816.
For the origins of the mallet form see a Southern Song Longquan vase originally in the Hachisuka family collection, sold in our London rooms, 8th November 2006, lot 54 and again at Christie’s Hong Kong, 26th November 2018, lot 8007. It has been suggested by several scholars that this shape, despite resembling a paper mallet, may in fact have been introduced to China as a glass vase or bottle from the Islamic west, possibly Iran. An Islamic glass bottle vase, probably from Nishapur, North East Iran, was among the treasures found in the tomb of the Princess of Chen, Liao dynasty, dating to no later than 1018 and illustrated in Grand View: Special Exhibition of Ju Ware from the Northern Sung Dynasty, National Palace Museum, Taipei, 2007, cat. no. 25, fig. 2. Fragments of glass vessels of this shape were found in 1997 among the excavated material from the cargo of the Intan shipwreck excavated off the Indonesian coast. This ship is believed to date to the Northern Song period. Furthermore, according to the Yi Jian Zhi [Record of Yi Jian] by the Song scholar official Hong Mai, Emperor Huizong owned a collection of imported glass.