A rare gilt-bronze and cloisonné-enamelled ghanta  Qianlong incised four-character mark and of the period

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Lot 316
A rare gilt-bronze and cloisonné-enamelled ghanta Qianlong incised four-character mark and of the period

Sold for HK$ 187,500 (US$ 24,055) inc. premium
Various Owners
A rare gilt-bronze and cloisonné-enamelled ghanta
Qianlong incised four-character mark and of the period
The dome-shaped body bordered by a band of ruyi heads at the footrim, surmounted by a circular mid-section, decorated with four stylised lotus blossoms issuing leaves and scrolling vines, brilliantly enamelled in rich tones of white, yellow, red, blue and green, set against a vivid turquoise ground, all beneath an elaborate goblet-shaped handle decorated with leaf lappets, incised flower sprays, raging waves in high relief and ending in a double vajra motif knop.
24cm high.

Footnotes

  • 清乾隆 銅胎掐絲琺瑯番蓮紋佛法鈴 「乾隆年製」刻款

    A ghanta generally has a clapper that is attached to the inside and the bell makes a high pitched sound when rung. It is usually held in the left hand during worship and rung continually while the various items are offered with the right hand. In a more spiritual sense, the brilliant sound of the ghanta is believed to chase away and strike fear into the evil spirits and to summon the Gods for protection. The ghanta, held in the left hand, is the perfection of wisdom and is said to proclaim the sound of emptiness. The vajra, held in the right hand, symbolises the hard or mighty one, is the sign of the 'diamond vehicle' or the Vajrayana Buddhist path. Together with a vajra or lightning bolt, which is considered inseparably linked to the ghanta, will form the complete principal ritual and ceremonial set. As a set, they represent the perfect union of wisdom and compassion, which are essential for attaining enlightenment.

    Imperial portrayal of such ritual objects in cloisonné enamels are rare and uncommon. The current lot does not have a clapper nor a proper handle to be functional and is therefore more as a venerated ritual object rather than for practical use. The current lot has been beautifully decorated with carefully constructed cloisons with vivid tones of brightly-boloured enamels, further surmounted by an elaborate handle topped with different tiers of expert craftsmanship, including detailed floral incisions, finely worked lappet leaves and raging waves motifs. These are all the flamboyant styles typical only in the Qianlong period, which is further substantiated by the Qianlong incised four-character mark and of the period at the base of the object.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that the upper and lower sections are possibly associated, but are both 18th century.
Contacts
A rare gilt-bronze and cloisonné-enamelled ghanta  Qianlong incised four-character mark and of the period
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