View full screen - View 1 of Lot 3609. An exceptional and large longquan celadon meiping Ming dynasty, Yongle period | 明永樂 龍泉青釉梅瓶.
3609

An exceptional and large longquan celadon meiping Ming dynasty, Yongle period | 明永樂 龍泉青釉梅瓶

An exceptional and large longquan celadon meiping Ming dynasty, Yongle period | 明永樂 龍泉青釉梅瓶

An exceptional and large longquan celadon meiping Ming dynasty, Yongle period | 明永樂 龍泉青釉梅瓶

An exceptional and large longquan celadon meiping

Ming dynasty, Yongle period

明永樂 龍泉青釉梅瓶


Japanese wood boxes

38.1 cm

The vase is in exceptionally good condition with just expected very light surface wear.


"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."

A Japanese private collection, prior to World War II.

Hirano Kotoken, 1978.

A Japanese private collection.


日本私人收藏,第二次世界大戰前

平野古陶軒,1978年

日本私人收藏


Deceptively simple in form and design, yet with its dynamic silhouette, this vase belongs to a group of elegant early Ming dynasty Longquan celadon wares. It embodies the achievements of the Longquan craftsmen as such undecorated vessels required the highest level of skill and precision in every stage of their production. Markedly top-heavy with a relatively narrow-waisted foot, this vase is a result of careful calculation: the exact proportions and firing temperature had to be achieved in order to prevent sagging or collapsing. The slightest irregularity in the clay, potting, glaze or firing would result in the destruction of the piece.


A slightly taller Longquan meiping from the Qing court collection, is preserved in the Palace Museum, Beijing, together with its original cover; see Longquan of the World: Longquan Celadon and Globalization, vol. II: State Vessels, Beijing, 2019, cat. no. 94. The author suggests that judging from its elegant shape, the Beijing example was probably made according to the authorised design for the Yongle court (p. 156). Four similar vases in the National Palace Museum, Taipei are included in the Museum's exhibition Green. Longquan Celadon of the Ming Dynasty, Taipei, 2009, cat. nos 64-67. Another example of this form and size in the Tokyo National Museum, formerly in the Yokogawa collection, is published in the Illustrated Catalogue of Tokyo National Museum. Chinese Ceramics, vol. 2, Tokyo, 1990, pl. 486. Two further vases were sold in our London rooms, one 20th May 1986, lot 2, the other, 10th November 2004, lot 561. Kiln wasters of many related vases and matching covers have been excavated from the imperial Longquan kilns at Chuzhou, Zhejiang province; see Ye Yingting and Hua Yunong, Faxian: Da Ming Chuzhou Longquan quanyao [Discover: Imperial ware of the great Ming dynasty from Longquan in Chuzhou], Hangzhou, 2005, pp. 38-101.


The form of this vase is an exaggerated version of the characteristic meiping of the Longquan kilns of the early Ming period and appears to derive from similar large blue and white prototypes from the imperial kilns at Jingdezhen; compare six meiping, decorated with various banded designs, excavated from the Yuan dynasty hoard at Gao'an country, illustrated in The Porcelain from the Cellar of the Yuan Dynasty in Gao'an, Shanghai, 2005, pp. 52-63. Longquan vases of this type were also decorated with scenes closely related to motifs developed at the Jingdezhen kilns; for example see a covered meiping carved with bamboo and prunus, in the Palace Museum, Beijing, published in Longquan of the World, op. cit., cat. no. 95. Such similarities support the notion that the court in Beijing commissioned and sent designs to Longquan kilns to be recreated for imperial use. Official documents record that the Longquan kilns were producing wares for the court until at least the Chenghua reign.


梅瓶素樸無紋,器形豐腴俏美,釉色明潤,誠明初龍泉佳例。時匠技藝精湛,如此上寬下歛、素面無紋之器,尤為難燒,但見瑕疵,即致佳料餘廢,需比例勻稱,窰火老練,方得上品。


北京故宮博物院清宮舊藏一相類龍泉帶蓋梅瓶,瓶略較此高,刊於《天下龍泉:龍泉青瓷與全球化》,卷2:國家公器,北京,2019年,編號94,圖錄筆者指,該瓶「形體秀美,從造型特徵看,應是明永樂時期龍泉窰依宮廷出樣而燒造的宮廷用瓷」(頁156)。台北故宮博物院藏四件相類梅瓶,則收錄於《碧綠:明代龍泉窰青瓷》,台北,2009年,編號64-67,僅第一例帶蓋。橫河收藏另有一例,器形與尺寸均與此相近,現存東京國立博物館,載於《東京国立博物館図版目錄.中國陶磁篇》,卷2,東京,1990年,圖版486。倫敦蘇富比也曾拍出兩例,分別為1986年5月20日,編號2,以及2004年11月10日,編號561。浙江處州龍泉窰址,曾出土多件梅瓶及配蓋,見葉英挺及華雨農,《發現:處州龍泉官窰》,杭州,2005年,頁38-101。


本品器形,較明初龍泉典型梅瓶,略顯豐張,或源出景德鎮官窰青花相類品。可參考高安元代窰址出土六梅瓶例,紋飾各有不同,錄於《高安元代窖藏瓷器》,上海,2005年,頁52-63。同類梅瓶,亦見紋飾與景德鎮窰相近者,如北京故宮博物院藏梅竹紋例,錄於《天下龍泉》,前述出處,編號95。由此即見,當時之龍泉或承官樣,以製供御之器。據官檔載,龍泉窰曾燒官器,至少到了成化一朝方竭。