An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902
Lot 15
An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902
Sold for HK$ 437,500 (US$ 56,443) inc. premium

Lot Details
An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902 An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle Ding Erzhong, dated 1902
An inside-painted rock-crystal 'Buddhist lion and dragon' snuff bottle
Ding Erzhong, dated 1902
Of rectangular section with gently curved shoulders surmounted by a cylindrical neck, the interior intricately painted with a dragon spewing forth a pearl whilst in flight amongst swirling clouds, the reverse with a Buddhist lion playing with a ball, one side with kaishu inscriptions, both sides with two signatures and painted seal marks of the artist.
6.1cm high.

Footnotes

  • Exhibited:
    Chinese Snuff Bottles, jointly presented by Hong Kong Chinese Snuff Bottle Collectors Study Group and the Urban Council, Hong Kong, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 15 October to 26 November 1977

    Illustrated:
    Bob Stevens, Snuff Bottles, New York, 1976, p.243, pl.880 and 881
    Paul Braga, Hong Kong Chinese Snuff Bottle Collectors, Arts of Asia, November-December 1976, p.84
    Chinese Snuff Bottles, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1977, p.115, pl.280

    Ding Erzhong (1865-1935), a late Qing official and classical literati artist, specialised in landscape and 'flowers and bird' painting, and was also proficient in the arts of seal carving and fan-mounted carving. His elegant and sophisticated inside-painted style was based on subject matter from classical painting. Ding's work originally flourished in Beijing, but he moved to Nanjing after the invasion of the Eight-Nation Alliance in 1900. From that point, his production of inside-painted snuff bottles dwindled. For more information and research on the art life of Ding, see Humphrey K. E. Hui, Ding Erzhong: the Artist and his Talents', Inkplay in Microcosm: Inside-painted Chinese Snuff Bottles, the Humphrey K. F. Hui Collection, Hong Kong, 2002, pp.44-47.

    The current bottle is clearly one of his masterworks from a time when he was only producing a limited number of inside-painted bottles.

    Although it is not made explicit whose paintings he was imitating, the subject of a dragon painted in ink is a long standing traditional motif in Chinese painting. The most famous and earliest artist to paint dragons in ink was the Song dynasty artist Chen Rong (active 1235-1258) from Fujian province. One of his ink paintings of a dragon, a nine dragon scroll, is now preserved in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (accession number 17.1697), and is illustrated by T. Wu, Tales from the Land of Dragons:1000 years of Chinese painting, Boston, 1997, pp. 197-201.

    Indeed, this special genre also exists in different materials of art. For an example of a porcelain brush holder painted with a dragon and inscribed with a poem in sepia enamel (fig.1), a donation from the Zande Lou collection to the Art Museum of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, inscribed with a poem signed by Tang Ying (1682-1756), the supervisor of the Imperial kiln during the Yongzheng and Qianlong periods, see Peter Lam ed, Elegant vessels for the lofty pavilion: the Zande Lou gift of porcelain with studio marks, Hong Kong, 1993, pl.14. By comparing all the examples mentioned above, it is clear that Ding followed the traditional subject matter of Classical Chinese painting into this bottle, implanting his literati painting style on it.

    The reverse of the bottle is painted with a Buddhist lion with the inscription 'Imitating Tang Yin'. Tang Yin (1470-1524) was one of the great four renowned Ming dynasty painters who specialised in landscape and figurative painting. There does not, however, appear to be any extant painting by Tang Yin with subject matter of Buddhist lion, so it appears that this subject matter is more common to the snuff bottle creation. It is believed that Ding represented this common subject matter under the painting style of Tang Yin, which was an intelligent and groundbreaking style of representation.

    1902年 丁二仲 水晶內畫墨龍圖鼻煙壺

    展覽:
    香港中國鼻煙壺收藏家學會、香港市政局聯辦,《中國鼻煙壺》,香港藝術館,1977年10月15日至11月26日

    出版:
    Bob Stevens, 《Snuff Bottles》, 紐約, 1976年, 頁243, 圖版880及881
    Paul Braga, 《Hong Kong Chinese Snuff Bottle Collectors》, Arts of Asia, 1976月11-12月, 頁84
    《中國鼻煙壺》,香港藝術館,香港,1977年,頁115,圖版280

    壺呈長方形,滑肩,橢圓形圈足。壺兩面皆以水墨設色,一面繪有雲龍吐珠,其墨龍穿梭於雲海間,雙目炯炯有神,以焦、濃、重、淡、清不同墨法,繪畫出神龍見首不見尾的意境,題款「二仲」;一面繪有瑞獅戲球,上題「仿唐寅於壬寅(1902)。二仲作。」,兩面題款下均繪有「二中」白文長方印,用筆用墨靈活多變。

    丁二仲(1865-1935),善山水花鳥,治印刻扇骨,多才多藝,是一位傳統的文人畫家,因此他的內畫鼻煙壺多以傳統中國畫題入畫,或臨摹傳統,風格細膩,筆墨變化多變,風格雅淡。本來居住在北京並開始以畫鼻煙壺謀生,1900年八國聯軍入侵後,南下定居南京,但自此較少治壺,改以刻印或刻扇謀生。本拍品便是他定居南京以後,內畫鼻煙壺續漸減產之少有傑作。有關丁二仲之生平及其藝學,可參見許建勳,〈丁二仲其人其藝〉,載於《壺中墨妙:誦先芬室藏內畫鼻煙壺》,香港,2002,頁42-43。

    雖然壺上沒有提示丁氏以何為本作墨龍圖,但在中國書畫傳統中,墨龍是中國書畫傳統中典型的題材。著名以墨龍入畫的畫家有宋代陳容(活躍於1235-1258),號所翁,福建長樂人。他擅詩文,善用水墨,以畫龍名重一時,現藏於美國波士頓博物館的《九龍圖卷》便是一例,見 T. Wu著,《Tales from the Land of Dragons:1000 years of Chinese painting》,波士頓,1997,頁197-201。自此傳統以後,多見不同畫家以墨龍為畫題,齊白石(1864-1957)、張大千(1899-1983)等著名畫家也有以此為題,構圖大致相同,以此追古。

    此一構圖也有繪於其他器物之上,如唐英(1682-1756)鑑製的墨龍筆筒便是一例,現為香港中文大學文物館藏品,見林業強編:《臺閣佳器:暫得樓捐贈堂名款瓷器》,香港,1993,圖版14(fig.1)。對比之下可見,丁二仲在鼻煙壺上繪畫的墨龍與唐英筆筒中的墨龍,在形態上十分相近,互相輝影,是借傳統文人母題之內容、構圖及技法入壺,一脈相承,充滿文人色彩。

    壺另一面題「仿唐寅」,但現存資料中,未見有唐寅畫瑞獅戲球之繪畫可作對比,或許是借唐寅之筆意。唐寅(1470-1524),明代四大畫家之一,以山水、人物尤為著名,其用筆及風格多變。然而,瑞獅戲球此母題是鼻煙壺常見之題材,如本專拍中拍品編號21便是一例,所以,很有可能丁氏借唐寅之筆意,從新演繹鼻煙壺藝術,集各家之大成。

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that this bottle is glass.
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first HKD800,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from HKD800,001 to HKD1,000,000 of the Hammer Price
12% on the excess over HKD1,000,000 of the Hammer Price.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licences please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Customer Services (Hong Kong)
    Customer Services
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +852 2918 4321
    FaxFax: +852 2918 4320
Similar Items