A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang
Lot 92Y
A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup
17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang
Sold for £170,500 (US$ 286,579) inc. premium
Auction Details
A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup 17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang
Lot Details
A very rare documentary rhinoceros horn 'prunus' libation cup
17th/18th century, signed You Meiwang
The pale amber horn carved as a gnarled prunus trunk with finely turned knots and crevices in the bark, the handle shaped as a slender twisting branch narrowing to thorned spikes and blossoming with prunus flowers and buds, the branch reaching across the rich brown-hued interior.
14.2cm (5 5/8in) long

Footnotes

  • 十七/十八世紀 犀角雕梅花紋杯 「友沬望」刻款

    Provenance: an important European private collection
    Previously on loan to two British museums from the mid 1970s until recently.

    Published: J.Chapman, The Art of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China, London, 1999, p.140.

    來源:重要歐洲私人收藏
    一直由1970年代中期到最近借展於兩間英國博物館

    出版:J.Chapman編,《The Art of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China》,倫敦,1999年,頁140

    The inscription reads

    石腋噴香雪
    蜂情逗早春

    Which may be translated as

    Beneath the rock flew with fragrant snow,
    while the bees start hovering in early Spring.

    The present cup is superbly carved successfully rendering its naturalistic nature depicting a gnarled trunk with prunus branches issuing blossoms. Compare a related 'prunus' libation cup, 17th century, with a gnarled trunk illustrated in T.Fok, Connoisseurship of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China, Hong Kong, 1999, pl.112 and also see similar carving of the trunk in cups illustrated ibid. pls.94 and 108; see also J.Chapman, The Art of Rhinoceros Horn Carving in China, London, 1999, pl.315.

    The United Kingdom Government has imposed an almost complete prohibition on granting a license to permit the export of worked antique rhinoceros horn from the UK to any destination outside the European Union. Please check with the department for further details.


    Exceptional Rhinoceros Horn Libation Cups from an Important European Private Collection

    The following three outstanding rhinoceros horn libation cups form part of an important European collection meticulously formed over the last fifty years. The superb works of art are a testament to the collector's eye and connoisseurship.

    The three rare rhinoceros horn libation cups were preserved and cherished for years whilst on loan to two British museums from the 1970s until recently.

    Few collections of this calibre have ever been formed. The exceptional objects were studiously chosen for their rarity, artistic and craftsmanship merits, representative of the great age of the literati. A decision has been taken to part with these now and allow present collectors the opportunity to enjoy them.

    以下三件巧奪天工的犀角雕杯源自一個精心收藏了五十年的重要歐洲私人珍藏。此三件犀角杯雕工精細,層次豐富,細入末毫,是犀角杯中的上佳之作,讓收藏家的品味與鑑賞能力再進一步提升。

    這一系列的犀角杯一直由1970年代中期到最近借展於兩間英國博物館,多年來保存良好,供大眾欣賞。

    這類型的收藏系列頗為罕見。藏家因其稀有、造型紋飾之美及工藝之巧,並因其生動地詮釋了文人時代的高雅風格,而精心挑選了此三件精美絕倫的作品。如今,藏家決定與此收藏系列道別,讓現今的收藏家享有賞析的絕佳機會。
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  1. Christine Mitchell
    Auction Administration - Chinese Works of Art
    Bonhams
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  2. Olivia Hamilton
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  3. Asaph Hyman
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    United Kingdom
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