It is known that the Qianlong Emperor was highly involved in the design process of various works of art made for the imperial court, and would commission designs which he admired to be made in various materials. However it is very rare to find surviving examples with matching designs but in different materials as in the current lot.
Jade archaistic gu vases first appeared in the Ming dynasty, and prevailed throughout the Qing dynasty as part of garniture sets as well as display items on the scholar's table. While many of these jade gu vases were composed of three separate sections stuck together, the current jade example was carved out of one single boulder with superb craftsmanship, making it exceptionally rare.
A pair of gilt-bronze beaker vases of identical design to the current gilt-bronze vase are in the National Palace Museum, Taipei Collection (object ID: 1503 & 1504). A celadon jade gu vase of similar shape and decoration to the current jade vase is in the Beijing Palace Museum Collection, illustrated in Jade II, Compendium of Collections in the Palace Museum, Shanghai, 2008, pl. 18. An identical pair of Qianlong-marked spinach jade beaker vases, formerly in the Arthur Curtis James Collection and Green Willow Hall Collection, was sold at Bonhams Hong Kong, 26 May 2007, lot 275.