Inkplay master's agate ducks
Lot 6
A dendritic agate snuff bottle Possibly Imperial, Official School, 1770–1860
Sold for HK$ 216,000 (US$ 27,824) inc. premium

Lot Details
Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks Inkplay master's agate ducks
A dendritic agate snuff bottle
Possibly Imperial, Official School, 1770–1860
5.9cm high.

Footnotes

  • Treasury 2, no. 322


    巧色瑪瑙鼻煙壺
    或為御製頒賜品,1770~1860

    The Ink-Play Master's Delicious Ducks

    Dendritic agate; very well hollowed, with a concave lip and concave foot surrounded by a small convex footrim; carved with a continuous partially cameo design of seven ducks on a lotus pond surrounded by rocky outcrops and long grass
    The Cameo Ink-play Master, possibly imperial, Official school, 1770–1860
    Height: 5.9 cm
    Mouth/lip: 0.74/2.00 and 2.05 cm (oval)
    Stopper: carnelian; silver collar
    Condition: workshop condition

    Lot 6 Provenance:
    Hugh Moss (1985)
    Published:
    Moss 1971, p. 56, no. 146
    Snuff Bottles of the Ch'ing Dynasty 1978, p. 118, no. 214
    Kleiner 1987, no. 168
    Treasury 2, no. 322, and front and back covers of one volume

    Exhibited:
    Hong Kong Museum of Art, October–December 1978
    Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, October 1987
    Creditanstalt, Vienna, May–June 1993

    Lot 6 Commentary
    In common with all of this carver's finest works, this is one of the great masterpieces of the Chinese chalcedony carver's art. The use of the material here is spectacular, including particularly stunning use of white inclusions mixed in with the brown, a relatively unusual occurrence in chalcedony snuff bottles but one which was obviously a speciality of this artist (see also Treasury 2, no. 324 and Moss, Graham, and Tsang 1993, no. 156 in the J & J Collection, the latter using the material in a similar way to completely separate a creature in the lower foreground near the foot). Another stroke of genius which earned this bottle a starring place in the Eyeball Agate group and, in fact, was one of the main reasons the name was coined (Moss 1971, nos. 145-147, and Moss, Graham, and Tsang 1993, no. 120), is the use of darker markings to create the eyes of the two ducks swimming together on the less colourful main side.

    This is another of the examples with this master's 'melting' rockwork, discussed under Treasury 2, no. 321.


    潑墨大師怡人的七隻鴨子

    瑪瑙;掏膛非常規整, 凹唇、凹底、凸形矮圈足;雕蓮池上七隻鴨子,或游或飛、坡石、蘆

    潑墨大師,或為御製頒賜品,1770~1860
    高:5.9 厘米
    口經/唇經:0.74/2.00 、2.05 厘米 (橢圓形)
    蓋:紅瑪瑙,銀蓋座
    狀態敘述:作坊狀態

    來源:
    莫士撝 (1985)

    文獻:
    Moss 1971, 頁 56, 編號146
    Snuff Bottles of the Ch'ing Dynasty, 頁 118, 編號214
    Kleiner 1987, 編號168
    Treasury 2, 編號322與第二冊封面與封底
    展覽:
    香港藝術館,1978年10 月至12月
    L'Arcade Chaumet, 巴黎, 1982年6月
    Sydney L. Moss Ltd, 倫敦, 1987年10 月
    Creditanstalt, 維也納, 1993年5月至6月

    說明:
    跟潑墨師其他的作品一樣,這是中國玉髓工藝中傑作之一。我們稱為潑墨師的匠工利用瑪瑙中的褐色斑紋琢磨出圖像,精致是夠精致了,可是最突出的是他採用罕見的兼有白色斑紋的瑪瑙來作更有趣的圖畫。除了本壺以外還可參照Treasury 2, 編號324和 Moss, Graham, and Tsang 1993, J & J 珍藏之編號156 。前者用白色的斑點雕呈呂尚垂釣渭之陽(或是嚴子陵垂釣富春江)圖中人物的臉和鬍子,後者則是使靠足部的一個動物突出。靈光一現的絕佳創意也呈現在利用褐色的斑點雕磨本壺一對游水的鴨子的眼睛;畫鴨點睛的這種技法曾使莫士撝管這一群煙壺叫做"眼珠瑪瑙煙壺群"(參見Moss 1971, 編號145~147與Moss, Graham, and Tsang 1993, 編號120)。

    本壺也具有潑墨師獨特的巖石雕法,他在鳥卉外瑪瑙有斑紋還待詮釋之處雕呈了石岸,而這石頭有潤滑的樣子,好像快要熔化了。可參見Treasury 2 編號321。
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