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Sancai moulded flower design square dish. Provenance, The Toguri Museum (Tokyo)

W 120mm H 25mm

Ref: WEB90

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Sancai moulded flower design square dish. Provenance, The Toguri Museum (Tokyo)

W 125mm H 20mm

Ref: WEB91

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A fine and rare sancai pottery figurine of a seated court lady seated on a waisted rockwork base. The slim lady holds the stem of a flower up to its chest with its right hand, while the flower itself, heavy, sinks down and rests on her right shoulder. Her hairstyle known as the luo ji (spiraling shell) is perfectly executed. Wearing a green glazed dress with uneven folds with an amber glazed shawl wrapped around her shoulders drapes below to her knees. Her extremely acute court style shoes appear from underneath her long green dress. Her delightful facial features coupled with the rounded modelling of the face typifies Tang sculpture work.

Figures of high ranking court ladies were few and far between in the Tang repertoire of sculpture making. That being said, women had gained rights that were not present in earlier dynasties, until they were taken away again by the forthcoming Song (960-1279) rulers. This figurine is an example of that short period whereby women could reach the higher echelons of society. Sitting upright and looking downwards she transmits a sense of entitlement. Her left-hand rest on her knee to convey an all-encompassing powerful position.

  • The result of thermoluminescence test carried out by Oxford Authentication LTD, certificate number: 466Q43 and is consistent with the dating of this piece.
  • A similar sancai-glazed court lady was offered at Sotheby's New York, ‘Important Chinese Art’. 16th March 2016, lot 272.
  • Another similar seated court lady is illustrated in “Selected Masterpieces of the Matsuoka Museum of Art”, Tokyo, 1975, pl. 23.

Provenance:

  • Christie's London, Fine Chinese Ceramics sale 12 Dec. 1988.

Earthenware, sancai glaze.

Tang dynasty (AD 618-907).

Possibly from the Gongxian kilns, Henan, China,

H: 34cm.

Ref: WEB110

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A fine painted pottery figure of a matron

Ref: WEB111

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Covered in a thick lead based amber glaze the ox stands square on a rectangular platform with its nostrils flared and eyes bulging, the tail flicked over its haunches. Like many of the earthenware produced in this period, this beautifully modelled ox, replicated from daily life but in a miniature size, would have been a burial object.

Provenance:

  • Eskenazi exhibition catalogue, “Chinese ceramics form the Cottle collection”, 28.11- 15.12. 1973 catalogue entry No. 22. pg. 42-3.
  • Another ox figure is illustrated by Mayuyama Ryusendo & Co in ‘5th Special exhibition of Tokyo Fine Art Club, Catalogue of Chinese Antique Porcelain.’ October 1972. pg.27 cat.13.

Earthenware, amber glaze.

Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907).

Possibly from the Gongxian kilns, Henan, China.

H: 15cm, W: 22cm

Ref: WEB112

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A Cizhou green glazed white slip flower vase. * A similar vase with two applied animal masks on shoulder is illustrated P40, 1-188, at Osaka city museum So Gen No Bijyutsu special exhibition Oct. 1979. Another one is illustrated P122 No. 79 The Hans Popper Collection of Oriental Art by Rene-Yvon Lefebvre d'Argence 1973.

Ref: WEB116

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Sancai pottery were the most technically challenging wares manufactured in the Tang dynasty. This jarlet, covered in a vibrant amber and green glaze over a white slip is a product of the master craftsmanship of the Gongxian potters. The soft clay bodies would have been fired at temperatures of 800 degrees centigrade, too low for the amber and green glazes to melt. Thus, lead oxide was added to the glazes as a flux, which reduced the melting point of the glazes allowing them to run naturally in the firing process.

  • A similar example is illustrated in ‘The Illustrated Catalogue of the Tokyo National Museum, 1965, no. 110, p. 226; another is illustrated by Eskenazi in ‘Chinese ceramics from the Cottle collection’, 1973, no. 7, pp. 20/1.

Provenance:

  • The Toguri Museum of Art, ‘Chinese Catalogue Number. 117.’ Tokyo.
  • Exhibited at Osaka City Museum in ‘Chinese Art Exhibition 1-25. Series Number 3.

Earthenware, sancai glaze.

Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907).

Gongxian kilns, Henan, China.

W 81cm H 71cm

Ref: WEB259

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A quatre-foil Sancai flower dish. Provenance: The Toguri Museum Tokyo

Ref: WEB276

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Jizhou tea bowl with floral slip ware decoration. (4441)

W 115mm H 115mm

Ref: WEB551

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Shiwan polychrome decorated stone ware standing figure,( Brighton Pavilion type )(4593)

W 230mm H 540mm

Ref: WEB572

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