A pale ruby-red and colourless glass snuff bottle Imperial glassworks, Beijing, 1710-1770
Lot 94
A pale ruby-red and colourless glass snuff bottle Imperial glassworks, Beijing, 1710-1770
Sold for HK$ 112,500 (US$ 14,515) inc. premium
Lot Details
A pale ruby-red and colourless glass snuff bottle
Imperial glassworks, Beijing, 1710-1770
5.21cm high.

Footnotes

  • Treasury 5, no. 771

    漸變紅色玻璃鼻煙壺
    御用玻璃廠,北京,1710~1770

    A glass snuff bottle

    Transparent pale ruby-red and colourless glass with extensive crizzling; with a flat lip and recessed, slightly convex foot surrounded by a protruding flat footrim; the narrow sides carved with mask-and-ring handles
    Imperial glassworks, Beijing, 1710-1770
    Height: 5.21 cm
    Mouth/lip: 0.94/1.44 cm
    Stopper: chalcedony; silver collar

    Condition: Workshop condition

    Provenance:
    Zhirou Zhai Collection
    Hugh M. Moss Ltd. (1993)

    Published:
    Kleiner 1995, no. 136
    Treasury 5, no. 771

    Exhibited:
    British Museum, London, June-October 1995
    Israel Museum, Jerusalem, July-November 1997

    This example supplies several reasons for confidence in our attribution to the Imperial glassworks. Apart from the mask-and-ring handles associated with the court, it is extensively crizzled both inside and out (although to the naked eye the crizzling appears to be confined to the inner surface), and crizzling was a well-known feature of the early Imperial glassworks. Further supporting our confident attribution, it is of a range of glass in which we find the standard ruby colour mixed with colourless glass to the point at which it becomes a pale ruby-pink with a high degree of transparency. Glass of this nature is found most often in a series of octagonal bottles decorated with Buddhist emblems and, usually, fish. These can be confidently designated Imperial, dated to the eighteenth century, and attributed to the Imperial glassworks.

    As Kleiner pointed out, the mask-and-ring handles here are unusual and not yet the standardized version with its formalized, curly-pated, rather leonine- looking taotie. Had this bottle been made in the late eighteenth century, one would have expected the carver to simply repeat one of a small series of standard versions which had, by then, become well established. A carver at the beginning of the century, in contrast, would be more likely to treat the feature as a vital decorative element and create something individual. We suspect we are dealing here with a bottle from the earlier end of the dating range given, possibly even from the late Kangxi or Yongzheng periods, but in any case no later than the mid-Qianlong reign.

    Whenever it was made, it must number among the most striking of glass bottles, with its perfect formal integrity, intriguing style of mask-and-ring handles and impeccably crisp and confident detailing. The slightly flared footrim is as neat and elegant as any known.

    紅漸變色玻璃鼻煙壺

    淡寶石紅及無色的透明玻璃,細裂紋多;平唇, 微凸斂底, 突出圈足,圈足底全面接觸地面;側面雕獸首啣環耳
    御用玻璃廠,北京,1710-1770
    高﹕ 5.21 厘米
    口徑/唇徑: 0.94/1.44 厘米
    蓋﹕ 玉髓;銀座

    狀態敘述: 出坊狀態

    來源:
    知柔齋珍藏
    Hugh M. Moss Ltd. (1993)

    文獻﹕
    Kleiner 1995, 編號 136
    Treasury 5, 編號 771

    展覽﹕
    大英博物館, 1995年6月~10月
    Israel Museum, 耶路撒冷, 1997年,7月~11月

    御用玻璃廠的早期製品多具細裂紋。常規的紅寶石紅玻璃和無色玻璃攪合也是十八世紀玻璃廠出的一種帶佛教性的圖案的八面壺常見的技巧。考慮獸首啣環耳不是十八世紀末年定型的那樣,我們推測本壺可能是康熙末、雍正作的,要不然一定是乾隆前半期作的。
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