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中國藝術珍品

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香港

清乾隆 醬地描金開光粉彩花卉山水紋葫蘆瓶
robustly potted with a large compressed globular lower bulb, sweeping up to a constricted waist supporting a smaller upper bulb rising to a waisted neck with a gently flared rim, the lower bulb moulded and delicately painted in bright enamels with four round medallions enclosing scenes of boys at play alternating with landscapes, one depicting two boys presenting persimmon fruits to another boy dressed in official attire and holding a ruyi sceptre, the other with a mountainous landscape with distant figures crossing a bridge, the third depicting three boys at play with a kite, lantern and a leafy spray of nandina berries, the last with fishing boats amongst a riverside landscape, similarly decorated to the upper bulb with smaller roundels variously enclosing flowers including lotus, peony, prunus, camellia and chrysanthemum, all reserved against a bronze-imitation ground of mottled brown tone embellished with gilt-decorated butterflies and detached flowering and fruiting sprays, all divided by upright plantain leaves, key-fret and stylised beaded ruyi bands, the rim encircled by a band of ruyi heads and the foot skirted by lappets interlaced with ruyi scrolls, the interior and base left white
66.2 cm, 26 1/8  in.
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傳奧地利私人收藏

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Imitations of other materials were a challenge taken up by the Jingdezhen potters to display the great potential of their craft, and appear to have particularly pleased the Qianlong Emperor. Archaistic bronzes were particularly favoured as popular models and were copied in a great variety of ways. The present vase belongs to a group of wares that combined a bronze-inspired ground, embellished with gilt-painted designs to simulate inlay, with a contemporary form and famille-rose design. A vase of this type, but of slightly larger size and a darker brown ground than the present, from the Qing court collection and still in Beijing, is illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum. Porcelains with Cloisonné Enamel Decoration and Famille Rose Decoration, Hong Kong, 1999, pl. 138.

Vases from this group were produced in an array of forms and embellished with various famille-rose scenes in shaped panels; a much smaller hexagonal vase with archaistic dragon handles, adorned with a landscape and poem on either side, was sold in these rooms, 29th November 1978, lot 304; a pair was sold in our London rooms, 10th July 1979, lot 179; and a wall vase version, with Qianlong seal mark and period, was sold in these rooms, 7th April 2015, lot 3123. See also a larger baluster vase, decorated on each side with a large quatrefoil panel enclosing landscape scenes and also set with archaistic dragon handles, but gilded with bats amidst cloud scrolls and sprays of lotus and lingzhi fungus, with Qianlong mark and period, sold in these rooms, 9th November 1982, lot 300; and a lobed ovoid vase, but splashed with gold mottling to give a metallic effect, also sold in these rooms, 29th November 1976, lot 587.

In decoration and form this vase is full of auspicious imagery which reveals it was probably produced as a marriage gift. The double gourd (hulu) is symbolic of the union of yin and yang, the meaning of which is complemented by the gilt-painted butterflies that flit from flower to flower symbolising a long a happy marriage. The combination of the peony, chrysanthemum, lotus and camellia on the upper bulb represents the four seasons, thus evoking the passage of time while the wish for many successful sons is indicated by the scenes of boys at play. Furthermore, the landscapes provide the reminder to the young couple that a connection with nature is vital for their personal growth and well-being.

中國藝術珍品

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香港