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A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS
A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS
A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS
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A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS
14 More
THE MONSIEUR GAIGNAT CELADON VASESProperty from the Collection of A. Jerrold Perenchio
A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS

THE PORCELAIN EARLY QIANLONG PERIOD (1736-95) CIRCA 1740, THE MOUNTS CIRCA 1745

Details
A PAIR OF LOUIS XV ORMOLU-MOUNTED CHINESE CELADON VASES WITH COVERS
THE PORCELAIN EARLY QIANLONG PERIOD (1736-95) CIRCA 1740, THE MOUNTS CIRCA 1745
Each with stepped lid with berried foliate-cast asymetrical finial above a flowerhead and trellis-cast rim and rocaille cabochon-cast outer border flanked by pierced interlaced foliate-cast arms, the porcelain bodies decorated in low relief and underglaze blue with knarled prunus trees on one side while on the other sacred deer prance beside pine and bamboo, magic fungus growing at their feet, on an asymetrical base cast with rocaille, each stamped with the 'C' couronné poinçon to base and on one lid
13in. (34.5cm.) high, 12in. (31.5cm.) wide
The 'C' couronné poinçon was a tax mark employed on any alloy containing copper between March 1745 and February 1749.
Provenance
Probably supplied to Louis-Jean Gaignat, Secrétaire du Roi and Receveur des Consignations, before 1768.
The Alexander Collection; Christie's, New York, 30 April 1999, lot 40.
Literature
Probably P. Rémy, Catalogue Raisonné....Qui composent le Cabinet de feu Monsieur Gaignat, Paris, 1768., no.95 (as depicted in Saint-Aubin's illustrated copy).
Sale room notice
Please note the additional provenance and literature added.
Provenance:
Probably supplied to Louis-Jean Gaignat, Secrétaire du Roi and Receveur des Consignations, before 1768. 
Literature:
Probably P. Rémy, Catalogue Raisonné....Qui composent le Cabinet de feu Monsieur Gaignat, Paris, 1768., no.95 (as depicted in Saint-Aubin's illustrated copy).



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Lot Essay


These magnificent vases are probably those included in the Catalogue Raisonné of the collection of Monsieur Gaignat, ancien Secrétaire du Roi, & Receveur des Consignations, drawn up by the menuisier Pierre Remy in 1768. Published in Paris, this catalogue is of particular historical importance, owing to the existence of the dessinateur Gabriel-Louis de Saint-Aubin's own copy, with illustrations for each lot drawn into the margins. Listed under no. 95, the vases were described as:

Deux Urnes coupes, de forme de seau bouteille, couvertes, de même porcelaine, fond céladon, avec animaux & arbustes en bas-reliefs blancs, lisrs d'un filet bleu.
Cet ouvrage est léger, délicat & peu commun, ce qui les rend très singulières: elles sont deux anses, & garnies en bronze ciselé et doré..

Whilst the sketchy nature of Saint-Aubin's illustration makes it impossible to conclude conclusively if these Alexander/Perenchio vases are indeed those from the Gaignat sale, the decoration of the porcelain - with its distinctive sinuous blossoming tree isolated against a plain background - the design of the ormolu mounts - with their solid, unpierced collar and exaggerated kick of the feet, as well as the distinctive profile of the stepped lid, would appear to correspond almost exactly.
The Gaignat catalogue also carried the following introductory sentence on the frontispiece:- ET celui des Porcelaines rares & anciennes, tant du Japon que de la Chine, de Saxe & de France; Effets de Laques, Meubles précieux & Bijoux, par S. Ph. POIRIER, Marchand. In view of what may, therefore, have been an existing relationship between Gaignat and the marchand-mercier Simon-Philippe Poirier, it seems possible that the Gaignat vases were supplied by the latter. That Poirier was not alone in supplying the Court with these distinctive vases, however, is confirmed in the Livre-Journal of the marchand-mercier Lazare Duvaux. For on 10 December 1754, he supplied Madame de Pompadour with: Deux autres vases d'ancienne porcelaine verte reliefs bleu, mont en bronze doré d'or moulu, 1,700 l.. The high price and infrequent reference to this distinctive type of porcelain suggests that it was both highly prized and admired in the eighteenth century.
A single pot-pourri vase with closely related, if more densely decorated porcelain and slightly more full-blown Louis XV mounts, displaying a pierced collar between the vase and the cover (which is not mentioned in the Gaignat catalogue description or illustration) is in the collection of Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Palace (J. Harris, G. de Bellaigue, O. Millar, Buckingham Palace and its Treasures, New York, 1968, p.188). Finally, a pair of pot-pourri vases with closely related decoration to the porcelain, but again with later, more full-blown Louis XV mounts and a flat lid, are in the Wrightsman Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (F.J.B. Watson, The Wrightsman Collection, New York, 1966, vol. II cat. no. 248 A-B).

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