A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850
Lot 5
A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850
Sold for HK$ 237,500 (US$ 30,622) inc. premium

Lot Details
A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850 A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850
A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle
Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730-1850
5.27cm high.

Footnotes

  • Treasury 2, no. 369

    玉髓巧雕文會圖鼻煙壺
    蘇州,芝亭流派,1730~1850

    A dendritic chalcedony 'elegant gathering' snuff bottle

    Dendritic chalcedony; reasonably well hollowed, with a concave inner lip and flat foot; carved with a continuous, partially cameo scene of a scholar in a rocky garden beside a painting table reaching up to hold a branch of a blossoming prunus which grows from a rocky outcrop while his attendant approaches him offering a cup of wine, while on the other main side another scholar is seated on a rocky ledge beneath another, jagged rock overhang, the wine jar in front of him on the same ledge on which he sits, while a second attendant stands in front of a rock-face, holding something, perhaps another cup of wine, up towards it or to the pine tree growing from it
    Suzhou, School of Zhiting, 1730 – 1850
    Height: 5.27 cm
    Mouth/lip: 0.7/1.69 cm
    Stopper: coral, carved with a reticulated, scrolling floral design; gilt-bronze collar chased with radiating lines

    Condition: one side of outer lip polished to remove chip, which is smoothed but still shows; miniscule nibbles to inner lip; small chip off pine needle cluster above the two figures

    Provenance:
    Gerd Lester (1986)

    Published:
    Kleiner 1987, no. 150
    Treasury 2, no. 369

    Exhibited:
    Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, October 1987
    Creditanstalt, Vienna, May–June 1993

    This is so close in feeling, style and quality of carving to Sale 1, lot 25, that it must have been a product of the same artistic personality. Even the painting table, set at a diagonal in both cases, is of identical shape, with the same rather unusual legs and feet, although here a plane of mottled darker colour in the stone, also dendritic on a restrained scale, has given it one of the loveliest painting tables in the snuff-bottle arts, resembling well-worn lacquer stained with ink. Every nuance of colour is, as usual, well used, even to the streak of dark running up to the neck on the same side as the painting table, which functions as a branch of the prunus tree. The prunus, when mature, has a gnarled old trunk that can grow to a reasonable thickness, but each year it puts out very long straight or curved new shoots that are of a quite different appearance, as here.

    Apart from the serrated-line rocks, which are in some parts subtle and almost free of striations, as occurs from time to time with this school, and the cheese-grater rocks (cf. Sale 2, lot 31), a third type is found here. It consists of a type used to depict horizontal planes of rock. The second scholar is seated on one, a kind of ledge tilted towards the viewer to suggest depth and carved around its sides with horizontal, jagged lines. Its surface is cut with a series of small incisions to indicate texture. This basic type of rock is used in the school as horizontal planes, sometimes crisper and more angular than this rather rounded version, and sometimes in deeper relief, as in Sale 1, lot 55, and Sale 2, lot 78. Its sides, representing the vertical surfaces, can be cut either with vertical or horizontal markings (the former in Sale 1, lot 55, and Sale 2, lot 78; the latter here).

    The scholar by the painting table, reaching for the flowering prunus branch, may be intended as Meng Haoran. Whenever this school depicted him on his donkey, he is garbed like this, with a loose, monk-like cowl instead of a scholar's hat or a tied, Daoist-style cloth cap, also adopted by scholars at leisure to keep their long hair out of the way in casual garb. It may be that this in conjunction with the prunus would have been enough to identify him to the original target audience, but the inclusion of the other scholar, and a couple of attendants, not usually associated with this particular figure, also allows for this to be no more than an idealized yaji ('elegant gathering') with a group of scholars in a garden setting with painting table at the ready, wine and attendants to fetch brush and ink, food, wine, etc. The prunus is a symbol in general for the scholar, so its appearance need not necessarily identify any particular scholar. On the other hand, this school may have used this distinctive headdress to represent one figure, in which case it is likely to be Meng Haoran by association with Treasury 2, no. 366 and its relationship to the nephrite bottle by the same artistic personality, Sale 1, lot 93, with its more conventional image of Meng on a donkey.

    玉髓巧雕文會圖鼻煙壺

    含樹枝狀斑紋的玉髓;掏膛還算完整,內凹唇,平底;雕通體半二色浮雕文人遊園圖
    蘇州,芝亭流派,1730 – 1850
    高﹕ 5.27 厘米
    口經/唇經: 0.7/1.69 厘米
    蓋: 珊瑚,雕鏤空卷枝紋,鎏金青銅座以鏨刻為放射狀斜行直線

    狀態敘述:唇外沿一面呈磨平的缺口,其痕跡還在,唇內沿有微乎其微的咬痕,松針一簇有小缺口

    來源﹕
    Gerd Lester (1986)

    文獻﹕
    Kleiner 1987, 編號150
    Treasury 2, 編號369

    展覽﹕
    Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, October 1987
    Creditanstalt, Vienna, May–June 1993

    這跟 第一場拍賣會,拍賣品號 25好像出於一手 。

    說明﹕
    本壺雕石法不是 第二場拍賣會,拍賣品號 31那樣以一層一層斧砍輪廓的平面雕成坡石,本壺的石頭基本上是一層一層的水平面;高浮雕的有如 第一場拍賣會,拍賣品號55及 第二場拍賣會,拍賣品號78。坡石的側面的皺紋可以豎,可以橫。前者,參看 第一場拍賣會,拍賣品號55與第二場拍賣會,拍賣品號78;後者看本壺。



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