A coral 'grapes and squirrels' snuff bottle Qing dynasty, 1760-1860
Lot 17
A coral 'grapes and squirrels' snuff bottle Qing dynasty, 1760-1860
HK$ 30,000 - 50,000
US$ 3,900 - 6,500
Lot Details
A coral 'grapes and squirrels' snuff bottle
Qing dynasty, 1760-1860
Of compressed rectangular form, intricately carved in high relief with a continuous scene of six squirrels clambering on grape vines, suspending grapes and leaves.
5.7cm high.

Footnotes

  • The popular subject of grapes and squirrels appeared as early as the Tang dynasty, and is a homophone of great reproductive power. The attribution to the zodiac zi of the Earthly branch of the squirrels and the plentiful grapes growing in large clusters on vines implies a wish for a grandson. Compare a closely related coral snuff bottle from the Mary and George Bloch collection, illustrated by Moss, Graham and Tsang, A Treasury of Chinese Snuff Bottles: The Mary and George Bloch Collection, Vol.3, Stones other than Jade and Quartz, Hong Kong, 1998, p.170, no.429, where the authors argue that this entire group was a mid Qing dynasty Imperial group carved at the Court, or at Yangzhou, Suzhou or Guangdong.

    清 1760-1860 珊瑚雕松鼠葡萄紋鼻煙壺

    壺扁瓶形,腹部扁方,橢圓形圈足。壺身通體浮雕松鼠葡萄紋,五隻松鼠攀於繁茂的葡萄藤之上,葡萄果實堆疊繁密,成串成簇,即象徵五穀豐收又代表多子多福之意。

    葡萄紋為中國工藝品常見裝飾題材,最早見於唐代。參見瑪麗及莊智博藏一件珊瑚雕松鼠葡萄紋鼻煙壺,除其底部採用玲瓏雕工藝外,其形制及紋飾與本壺基本一致,莫士撝, Victor Graham 及曾嘉寶著,《A Treasury of Chinese Snuff Bottles: The Mary and George Bloch Collection》,第3冊,頁170,編號429。書中作者認為同類鼻煙壺應為揚州、蘇州或廣東地區專門為宮廷所作。
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