A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775
Lot 112
A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775
Sold for HK$ 2,420,000 (US$ 312,256) inc. premium
Auction Details
A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775 A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775 A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775 A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775 A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775
Lot Details
A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle
Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, Qianlong blue-enamelled four-character mark and of the period, 1736-1775
4.19cm high.

Footnotes

  • Treasury 6, no. 1082

    銅鍍金胎畫琺瑯開光百花圖鼻煙壺
    御製品,北京宮廷造辦處,藍彩「乾隆年製」楷款,1736~1775

    A 'famille-rose' enamelled copper and gold 'millefleurs' snuff bottle

    Famille-rose enamels on copper, with gold; with a flat lip and concave foot with a very slightly recessed, slightly convex central area, surrounded by a flat footrim; painted on each main side with quatrefoil panels of millefleurs design including lotus, lilies, chrysanthemums, asters, and peonies, the surrounds with a series of interlinked circles and 'C' scrolls interspersed with small circles shaded to resemble hemispheres; with neck-bands of formalized waves, a formalized floral scroll, and dots, the latter repeated around the base; the foot inscribed in blue regular script Qianlong nian zhi ('Made during the Qianlong period'); the interior covered with a patchy, turquoise-blue enamel; the exposed metal gilt
    Imperial, palace workshops, Beijing, 1736–1775
    Height: 4.19 cm
    Mouth/lip: 0.72/1.25 cm
    Stopper: gilt bronze, chased with a formalized floral design; original

    Condition: well-restored area upper neck, 1.0 x 0.5cm, plus two other small chips made up; some wear to gilding on foot; some minor original pitting to enamel, but otherwise, workshop condition

    Provenance:
    Fima and Lillian Ginzberg
    Sotheby's, New York, 26 November 1991, lot 92 (back cover illustration)

    Published:
    Kleiner, Yang, and Shangraw 1994, no. 3
    Kleiner 1995, no. 11
    Treasury 6, no. 1082

    Exhibited:
    Hong Kong Museum of Art, March–June 1994
    National Museum of Singapore, November 1994–February 1995
    British Museum, London, June–October 1995
    Israel Museum, Jerusalem, July–November 1997

    We are constantly tempted to overuse the term 'unique' with palace enamels, but the fact is, the vast majority of them are simply that. One of the features of highly artistic work is that each composition is different, even if the subject is a popular one. Although the subject here is part of the popular theme of a profusion of flowers, the conception and composition are individual, with one particularly unusual feature being the simple view of each flower, looking straight into the corolla of the bloom. Also unusual are the slight but significant yellow ground upon which they crowd and the intensity of the palette.

    The surrounds here are intriguing, and a first impression is of a rather European design, although with subtle reference in parts to the standard lingzhi symbolism that so often finds its way into these decorative borders in some guise or other. They are more likely to have been derived from archaic jades, however, where the shape of the ubiquitous bi disc provides the circles, and the raised, formalized design of 'C' shapes and raised bosses that so often decorate their surfaces, the interlocking forms. The 'C' scrolls probably originally represented formalized clouds, although they may also be derived from a simplified leiwen ('thunder-pattern'). Whatever their origin, the white circles they enclose here have been deliberately shaded to suggest spheres; read as pearls floating in the design, these spheres would be symbolically appropriate, since the pearl is associated with the emperor.

    Enamelled glass bottles from the early Qianlong period often have unusually shallow recessions and, during the mid-Qianlong period, there was even a tendency towards a protruding, completely flat foot. It may be that it was simply easier to write a calligraphically fluent mark on a relatively level base than on a recessed one, where a protruding footrim would inhibit to some extent the natural modulations of brushwork. Because the vast majority of these wares, and probably nearly all of them from the late Kangxi onwards, were intended to be inscribed with marks, they were constructed accordingly.

    銅胎畫琺瑯開光繁花圖鼻煙壺

    銅胎畫琺瑯,加黃金;平唇,凹底,底中心微斂、微凸,圈足,足底全面接地;兩正面繪海棠形開光,開光內畫西洋百花圖案,底書藍色 "乾隆年製" 楷款,內壁施斑駁的綠松石藍琺瑯,無琺瑯的銅鎏金
    御製品,宮廷作坊,北京,1736–1775
    高﹕ 4.19 厘米
    口經/唇經: 0.72/1.25 厘米
    蓋: 鎏金青銅; 鏤刻形式化的花朵;原件

    狀態敘述:頸上部有一處被成功地修復,1.0 x 0.5厘米,也有修復過的兩道小缺口,琺瑯呈原有的點狀缺陷;此外,出坊狀態

    來源﹕
    Fima and Lillian Ginzberg
    紐約蘇富比,1991年11月26日,拍賣品號 92 (封底圖)

    文獻﹕
    Kleiner, Yang, and Shangraw 1994, 編號3
    Kleiner 1995, 編號11
    Treasury 6, 編號1082

    展覽﹕
    香港藝術館,1994年3月~6月
    National Museum of Singapore, November 1994–February 1995
    大英博物館,1995年6月~10月
    Israel Museum, 耶路撒冷,1997年7月~月11月

    說明﹕
    百花圖案沒甚麼稀罕,但本件煙壺的百花圖的設計是身孤影單的。每一朵花的黃蕊都向觀者開,地呈淡而有意義的黃色、色彩極其明朗。開光周圍的飾紋應該看為中歐圖案傳統的容合,其中很多的形式是中國的飾紋,如變形的如意點紋。


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