A very fine Ming-style blue and white pear-shaped vase, yuhuchun ping Qianlong seal mark and of the period
Lot 312
A very fine Ming-style blue and white vase, yuhuchunping Qianlong seal mark and of the period
Sold for £240,000 (US$ 399,297) inc. premium
Auction Details
A very fine Ming-style blue and white pear-shaped vase, yuhuchun ping Qianlong seal mark and of the period
Lot Details
Another Owner
A very fine Ming-style blue and white vase, yuhuchunping
Qianlong seal mark and of the period
Of elegant pear-shaped form, rising to a wide trumpet mouth, the body finely painted in deep, vivid tones of underglaze blue in imitation of heaping and piling, with plantain and bamboo growing beside pierced rockwork on grassy mounds enclosed by fencing in the background, bordered below by a band of upright lotus lappet and nine lotus flowers at the splayed foot, a pendent ruyi-head border at the shoulder, below bands of upright elongated plantain leaves and a stylised floral scroll to the waisted neck.
28.8cm (11¼in) high

Footnotes

  • Provenance: acquired in Philadelphia in the 1940s-50s, by repute
    An Irish private collection, Co. Carlow

    The design of bamboo, plantain and rocks has been much favoured by Chinese literati on account of its auspicious connotations. Traditionally, bamboo symbolizes longevity, as it remains green in winter; and endurance and loyalty, as it does not break in the wind. The banana or plantain tree, much admired by the Chinese for its fruit and large ornamental leaf, is a symbol of education. Classical legends tell the tale of a scholar who wrote on plantain leaves since he was too poor to afford any paper. Rocks represent durability and steadfastness and thus are symbols of reliability and friendship.

    The design is found on porcelains as early as the Hongwu period, and vases of closely related form and design are known from the Yongle reign: see a vase in the Palace Museum, Beijing, illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Blue and White Porcelain with Underglazed Red (I), Hong Kong, 2000, pl.33.

    The design was revived again into the repertoire of early Qing porcelain production, as Imperial Qing commissions reproducing early Ming-style ceramics became increasingly popular. A Yongzheng mark and period example was sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 2 November 2005, lot 511. During the Qianlong period many versions were produced, see related examples illustrated in Porcelain of the National Palace Museum: Blue and White Wares of the Ch'ing Dynasty, Vol II, Hong Kong, 1968, pl. 12. Further Qing Dynasty examples in the Forbidden City are illustrated in situ in Classics of Forbidden City. Life in the Forbidden City of Qing Dynasty, Beijing, 2007, p.142, fig.213 and p.148, fig. 221.
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