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photographer E-Yaji.
The Mary and George Bloch Collection: Part V  
Bonham's, Hong Kong, 27 May 2012: Lot 101 

Lot 101


Lot 101
Treasury 6, no. 1303 (‘In Pursuit of the Pearl’)

An iron-red and underglaze blue porcelain ‘dragons’ snuff bottle

Iron-red and black enamels on colourless glaze on cobalt on porcelain; with a convex lip and recessed, slightly ridged, flat foot surrounded by a protruding convex footrim; painted with a continuous design of an Imperial five-clawed dragon on each main side with a flaming pearl in front of it, the eyes of the dragons painted in black enamel; the neck with a band of formalized lingzhi; the foot inscribed in iron-red regular script, Daoguang nian zhi (‘Made during the Daoguang period’); the lip, inner neck, and interior glazed
Imperial kilns, Jingdezhen, 1821–1850
Height: 6.46 cm
Mouth/lip: 0.7/1.2 cm
Stopper: coral; mother-of-pearl finial; vinyl collar

Robert Hall (1985)

Kleiner, Yang, and Shangraw 1994, no. 166
Treasury 6, no. 1303

Hong Kong Museum of Art, March–June 1994
National Museum of Singapore, November 1994–February 1995

The colour and nature of the underglaze-blue pigment tends to differ between the late Qianlong era and the Daoguang reign; otherwise, little changed.
Fortunately for us, the chronology of porcelain production is better indicated by other, less formal Imperial subjects and by wares produced for the broader public, which responded to changing fashion quite rapidly. If the kilns at Jingdezhen had kept on producing the same old designs for half a century and left them unmarked, we might be hard pressed to date more than a handful accurately. Fortunately, this one was not left unmarked and, what is more, it bears one of the rarer regular-script reign marks of the period.

One reason for combining an enamel with underglaze blue was so that the main subject, the significantly important Imperial dragon, could be better detailed in terms of fine line than was possible with underglaze pigments.


Easy link to this page: http://www.e-yaji.com/auction/photo.php?photo=1438&exhibition=10&ee_lang=eng


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Hugh Moss |