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photographer E-Yaji.
The Mary and George Bloch Collection: Part VII  
Sotheby's, Hong Kong, 26 November 2013: Lot 17 

Lot 17

Lot 17
Treasury6, no. 1168 (‘Turquoise Deception’)
HK$118,750

Turquoise and black enamel on colourless glaze on porcelain; with a flat lip and concave foot; engraved on each main side with an identical composition of two chi dragons confronting each other across a pearl, a formalized shou (‘longevity’) character, a lingzhi, and an Indian lotus, one above the other; the exterior surfaces, including lip, foot, and footrim, enamelled to imitate turquoise matrix; the interior glazed
Probably imperial, Jingdezhen, 1770–1810
Height: 6.36 cm
Mouth/lip: 0.58/1.74 cm
Stopper: coral; gilt-bronze collar

Provenance:
Thomas Bellow Walker Collection (Walker Institute, Australia)
Reif Collection
Christie’s, New York, 18 October 1993, lot 37

Published:
Treasury 6, no. 1168

For the second bottle in the Bloch Collection that imitates turquoise matrix, there are also sensible reasons for an imperial attribution (for the other, see Sale 3, lot 14). The flattened form with a flared neck is typical of imperial porcelain production of the latter part of the Qianlong period, and the subject matter is typically courtly, with its chi dragons, Indian lotus and other formalized, auspicious elements. The absence of a reign mark does not weaken the case for imperial requisition in this case, for it can be explained very well by the fact that the bottle imitates turquoise. Bottles made of real turquoise were rarely given reign marks. (See Treasury 3, no. 424, for a rare exception.) Thus, a designer imitating the stone may not have even considered adding one.

 

This is not the Sotheby’s sale catalogue. This is a product of Hugh Moss for the purposes of this website. For the catalogue details please refer to Sotheby’s website or request a copy of a printed sale catalogue from Sotheby’s.

 

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