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A FINE AND RARE FAMILLE ROSE TURQUOISE-GROUND OVIFORM VASE

Details
A FINE AND RARE FAMILLE ROSE TURQUOISE-GROUND OVIFORM VASE
IRON-RED QIANLONG SEAL MARK AND OF THE PERIOD

The body rises to a cylindrical neck applied with two pierced handles below the flaring mouth, enamelled in pink, shades of green, yellow, blue, white, iron-red and gilt with a four-headed lotus scroll, the blooms divided by ruyi suspended from further lotus scrolls, all between a band of petals and T-fret above the foot, and four pairs of confronted archaistic dragons at the shoulder, the neck with foliate lotus sprays, the handles iron-red and gilt below a key-pattern at the rim, all reserved against a turquoise ground
8 in. (20.3 cm.) high, box
Provenance
W. W. Winkworth, sold Sotheby's London, 12 December 1972, lot 175, and again at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 23 May 1978, lot 253.
Exhibited
Christie's London, An Exhibition of Important Chinese Ceramics from the Robert Chang Collection, 2-14 June 1993, Catalogue, no. 101.

Lot Essay

Previously sold in our New York Rooms, 10 December 1987, lot 280.

With the technical advances and virtuosity of porcelain production during the Qianlong period, potters from the official kilns were able to experiment with different ways and techniques to satisfy the emperor's penchant for the curious and archaic. Although the use of trompe-l'oeil was not pioneered by the potters during the Qianlong reign, the technique was nevertheless successfully employed. This vase is from a group decorated in imitation of cloisonne enamel, a technique where applied strips, or 'cloisons', are soldered on the body of a metal vessel creating small pools which are then filled with coloured glass paste and fired.

The Jingdezhen potter was most probably inspired from the Ming fahua method of laying a slip or coiled-porcelain thread design onto a plain ground, and then filling in the spaces with glaze washes. This technique is itself apparently derived from cloisonne enamel. Unlike the final effect of fahua in which the outlines of the pattern stand out in relief, the objective of cloisonne enamel was to polish down the infilled areas of enamel, leaving a smooth surface with the wire outline. It is therefore possible that, in the case with the present lot, the potter was influenced by both techniques, but most evidently imitating cloisonne enamel, even simulating the effect of gilt wires outlining the colour areas. Compare also the Jiaqing-marked double-gourd vase imitating cloisonne enamel illustrated in Sekai Toji Zenshu, vol. 12, fig. 61, and another pair from the Robert Chang Collection, exhibited at Christie's London, June 1993, Catalogue, no. 103.

(US$50,000-65,000)

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