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    Sale 1958

    The Hodroff Collection, Part II Chinese Export Porcelain From The Collection Of Leo & Doris Hodroff

    23 January 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 249

    A RARE PRONK CISTERN AND COVER

    CIRCA 1738-40

    Price Realised  

    A RARE PRONK CISTERN AND COVER
    CIRCA 1738-40
    Painted in a Chinese Imari palette with the 'Hand-Washing' as designed by the Dutch artist Cornelis Pronk for the VOC, showing on each side two elegant Chinoiserie ladies rinsing their hands with water from a basin borne by a boyservant, all in loose Chinese robes and with underglaze blue hair drawn up in topknots, above them a fantastic bird flies by and in the grasses at their feet is curled a serpent, on the sides large cobalt blue and gilt trees bearing a profusion of large blooms and berries, all framed by formal trellis pattern borders in shades of iron-red, underglaze blue and gilt, repeated on the domed cover centering a Japanese replacement knop, the front fitted with a gilt bronze spigot
    20½ in. (52.1 cm.) high (2)


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    Like several of the other known Pronk designs, this scene seems to be drawn largely from the artist's imagination, with a wholly Chinoiserie rendering based loosely on images he had no doubt seen on Chinese porcelains in Holland. The scene's basin, shaped like the kind of large Kraak piece loved by the Dutch, echoes the basin seen in Pronk's 'Doctor's Visit' pattern, as do the borders, the snake and grasses below and even the bird above. The 'Hand Washing' seems to have been made only in these magnificent urns, in blue and white and famille rose as well as in a Chinese Imari palette. See C.J.A. Jorg, Pronk Porcelain, Exhibition Catalogue, Groninger Museum, 25 April - 8 June 1980, pp.32-4. See also Howard & Ayers, op. cit., pp. 292-5, for a blue and white example from the Mottahedeh collection. A slightly larger Chinese Imari version was sold Christie's London, 6 November 1995, lot 27. A famille rose example was sold Sotheby's London, 19 June 2002, lot 137.

    Provenance

    Benjamin F. Edwards III Collection