Masterpieces of Yixing Stoneware from the Mr and Mrs Jimmy Sha Collection (lots 546-558)
An Yixing stoneware water vessel
Qing dynasty, signed Chen Mingyuan Of globular form supported on a short steeply rounded foot, the sloping sides rising to a flared neck, intricately moulded with a band of archaistic leiwen scroll and pendant blades, the centre of the base incised with a two-character kaishu mark, the clay of an attractive olive-brown colour. 7.4cm diam.
Provenance: Tan Jing (late Qing dynasty / early Republican period), by repute Du Yuesheng (1888-1951), and thence by descent, by repute I-Hsing Wares: Property from a Private Collection, Sotheby Parke Bernet, Hong Kong, 24 May 1978, lot 347
來源: 譚敬 (清末民初) (擬) 杜月笙 (1888-1951) 遺傳至其後裔 (擬) 香港蘇富比，I-Hsing Wares: Property from a Private Collection,1978年5月24日，拍品編號 347
Chen Mingyuan is a renowned figure in the history of the art of Yixing stoneware, although there are few extant historical records of his life. The dates of his birth and death are unrecorded, though current scholarship has come to a general consensus that Chen was active during the Kangxi/Yongzheng period (1662-1735), or as early as Shunzhi/Kangxi period (1644-1722).
Chen's artistic names are usually seen as hefeng, hecun, shixia shanren and huyin. His superb skill and craftsmanship has been extensively recorded in traditional Yixing connoisseurship. In Yangxian shahu tu kao, or A Pictorial Study of Yangxian Pottery Teapots (Li Jingkang, Zhang Hong, 1937:12), Chen's outstanding craftsmanship on teapots and scholar's objects is recorded as being comparable to that of Xu Youquan and Shen Ziche, whose skills were equally matched with their contemporaneous master, Shi Dabin. Extant examples of Chinese sculptures illustrate the intense interest in the production of objects for the scholar's studio and a great development of sculptural tradition at the end of the Ming dynasty. Chen Mingyuan of the early Qing was arguably the great successor and innovator of such development.
For a closely related example with Chen Mingyuan mark in the Yixing stoneware exhibition hall, see Yixing zisha zhenshang (Appreciation of Yixing Stoneware), Hong Kong: Joint Publishing Ltd. 1992, p.71.(fig.1)
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