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TWO RARE BLUE, AMBER AND CREAM-GLAZED POTTERY EQUESTRIAN FIGURES

Details
TWO RARE BLUE, AMBER AND CREAM-GLAZED POTTERY EQUESTRIAN FIGURES
TANG DYNASTY

One rider an official wearing a long amber tunic and pants, his right hand held to his chest, seated on a blue-glazed saddle set atop a saddle blanket splashed in blue, amber and cream, the well-modeled horse standing foursquare on an unglazed base with head lowered and turned to the side as if reined in, covered with a blue-splashed cream glaze and with a blue stripe running the length of the hogged mane and another in the center of the rump; the other rider a musician dressed in blue robes with his hands positioned to hold reins, a small blue drum set beside the saddle atop the blue-glazed saddle cloth, the horse well modeled with arched neck, its cream body liberally splashed in amber falling in streaks down the legs onto the rectangular base
17 and 15 5/8in. (43.2 and 39.7cm.) high (2)

Lot Essay

It is unusual to find Tang equestrian figures with blue glazes, especially with the glaze so liberally applied

The blue splash-glazed horse with amber-glazed rider in the present lot can be compared to a horse without a rider, but of the same size, in the British Museum, illustrated by Margaret Medley, Tang Pottery and Porcelain, Faber and Faber, London, 1981, pl. F and also to the blue-glazed horse, from the Georges deBatz collection sold in these rooms, November 30, 1983, l0t 304. Though both cited examples are quite similar in the application of the blue pigment, the glaze on the present lot is more brilliant

A similar model of an equestrian drummer, but without the blue glaze, was excavated in Luoyang and is in the Henan provincial museum, see Zhongguo taoci quanji, Tang Sancai (The Great Treasury of Chinese Ceramics, Tang Sancai), vol. 7, 1983, pl. 88; and another excavated from the tomb of Li Zhen at Liquan county and dated to 718 A.D., was included in the exhibition of Ancient Art Treasures of the People's Republic of China, Japan, 1979, Catalogue, no. 54

The results of Oxford thermoluminescence test nos. 866e62 and 866e63 are consistent with the dating of this lot
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