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Chinese porcelain blue and white vase with globular body and baluster neck, painted with flowers, birds and insects, the neck with elaborate flanges. *The form is inspired by Venetian glass. This piece is rare both for its excellent condition and its tallness. (5318)

W 130mm H 260mm

Ref: WEB1087

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An exceptionally large underglaze blue and white ‘Eight Immortals’ bowl. 

The bowl is well potted with steep sides and an everted rim. The interior displays a tranquil landscape scene with two men sitting by the calm water underneath a pine tree. The exterior displays the Eight immortals meandering beneath trees towards Shoulao, the god of longevity depicted here sitting on a crane.

The notorious Eight Taoist Immortals coined by the Quanzhen school were first depicted in Jin Dynasty tomb murals (1115-1234). The depiction of these eight Taoist figures was believed to be a symbol of long-term prosperity and longevity, and soon became a popular motif in many mediums. The far-right figure resting a lotus flower on her shoulder is He Xian Gu and is considered to improve ones mental and physical health. She gazes upwards to Lu Dongbin who dangles a fly whisk in the air while his magic sword, used to slay dragons and demons remains sheathed and hung around his shoulder on his back. The energetic and always well-dressed Cao Guo-Jui holds two jade tablets in each arm as if to protect himself from rain. Below him the instantly recognizable Li Tieguai holding a double gourd with vapor seeping out, believed to be the sages’ soul moving in and out of the container. Ahead of him is the joyful flute player Han Xiang-Zi, said to be able to soothe ferocious wild animals with his music. While enjoying Han Xaing-Zi’s beautiful melodies, Lan Cai-he holds up a basket of blossoming flowers as she walks towards Shoulao. The eldest of the immortals Zuang Guolao raises his two drumsticks with his left hand as if to cast a spell. Juxtaposed is the chief of the Eight Immortals, Zhong Li Quan, whose voluminous belly would have been hanging out of his robe going against the grain of Confucius ideals. His distinctive hairstyle with two buns at the top of his head and offering a peach to Shoulao, are two features that identify him.

Provenance:

  • The Peter and Nancy Thompson Collection
  • Exhibited in The Oriental Ceramic Society of Hong Kong and the Urban Council, Hong Kong, Transitional Wares and Their Forerunners, 29 January to 29 March 1981, p. 148, no. 98.

Porcelain, cobalt Blue

Jingdezhen, Jiangxi Province, South Central China.

W 34.3cm H 15cm

Ref: WEB1115

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One of a set of five Ko-Sometsuke saucer dishes with Chinese boys playing. (3204)

Ref: WEB134

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A plate decorated with a man playing a Musical instrument.(4514)

W 150mm H 150mm

Ref: WEB563

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A boy riding a bull to herd the cattle into their pen. (4898)

W 210mm H 35mm

Ref: WEB603

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An old herdsman rounding up the bulls back to their pen. (4898)

W 210mm H 40mm

Ref: WEB604

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A set of 5 dishes of a standing court official. (4884)

W 155mm H 35mm

Ref: WEB605

 

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Porcelain, underglaze cobalt blue.

Jingdezhen, Jiangxi Province, South Central China

Jiajing Period (1522-1566). Ming Dynasty.

H: 20cm. W: 16cm

Heavily potted with four steep sides that slightly round at the shoulders. The exterior depicts a five-clawed dragon amongst lotus scrolling and buds. The upper and lower sections exhibit a band of ruyi-heads and rigid lappets. All decorated in an underglaze cobalt blue with shades ranging from pale silvery blue to a vivid violet-blue. The six-character mark on the base reads ‘da ming jia jing nian zhi’.

The five-clawed dragon depicted on this vase is the most relatable symbol of imperial ranking. The wide-eyed five-clawed dragon with curling horns is the direct symbol of the emperor. (5392)

WEB1136

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Ming dynasty (1368–1644), Tianqi period (1621–27)

ca. 1625

China

Porcelain painted with cobalt blue under transparent glaze (Jingdezhen ware)

23.5cm x 4.5cm

 The shape of the dish, which alludes to the Ginko leaf, indicates that it was commissioned by a Japanese patron, most likely for a meal that accompanied the tea ceremony. The dish depicts a tranquil landscape scene. (5536)

WEB1186

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Tanqi Period: 1605-1627

China.

22cm x 5cm

Crisply moulded as an open lotus bloom supported on a low straight foot, with two rows of overlapping petals encircling a central medallion enclosing a landscape scene. The exterior painted with Buddhist symbols alternating with flower sprays above a row of projecting petal tips.

(5532) 

WEB1188

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