A rare large gilt-bronze and cloisonné enamel vase, yen yen 15th/early 16th century and 17th century
Lot 121
A rare large gilt-bronze and cloisonné enamel vase, yen yen
15th/early 16th century and 17th century
Sold for HK$ 5,560,000 (US$ 712,266) inc. premium

Lot Details
The Property of a Gentleman 士紳藏品
A rare large gilt-bronze and cloisonné enamel vase, yen yen 15th/early 16th century and 17th century
A rare large gilt-bronze and cloisonné enamel vase, yen yen
15th/early 16th century and 17th century
The heavily cast vase vibrantly enamelled around the flaring foot and bulbous body with fully blossoming lotus issuing from foliate meanders, the body set with three single-horned mythical beast heads each suspending a separetely cast handle enamelled with cloisonné enamel flowers, all beneath two heavy ribs separated by a band of small floral scrolls, beneath the flaring neck with tall lappets containing and surrounded by further large lotus meanders, the neck flanked by a pair of stylised gilt mythical beast handles beneath the gilt rim incised with key-fret.
63.5cm (25in) high

Footnotes

  • 十五/十六世紀早期及十七世紀 掐絲琺瑯纏枝蓮紋獸首三環鳳尾尊

    Provenance 來源:
    A European private collection and thence by descent

    The present vase provides collectors, academics and cloisonné enamel enthusiasts alike with a rare opportunity to delve once more into the ongoing discussion on dating of cloisonné enamel, a subject which have been reinvigorated since the new publications in the area by the Palace Museum, Beijing and the exhibition and accompanying book edited by B.Quette, Cloisonné: Chinese Enamels from the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties, New York, 2011.

    As noted by Zhang Rong in 'Cloisonné for the Imperial Courts', ibid., p.152: 'A close examination of surviving enamel objects from the Yuan has led to the discovery that most of them have been reworked, including the zun cloisonné vessel in the front piece [see ibid., p.150]. Only the middle section of the zun - a guan (jar) - is actually dated to the Yuan dynasty; the rest of the piece, including the neck, feet, handles, and its Jingtai-period mark, were added during the Kangxi reign (1662-1723) of the Qing dynasty.' This vase is further illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum: Metal-bodied Enamel Ware, Hong Kong, 2001, pl.1.

    The Palace Museum zun from the Qing Court Collection is similar not only in the decoration on the body but also in the later Kangxi period assembled parts and mounts including the gilt-bronze monster-mask handles, the cloisonné enamel loose rings and the gilt-bronze stylised dragon handles on the neck. A similar example is another similarly shaped vase bequeathed by Benjamin Altman in 1913 to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, where the body of the vase is dated to Yuan or early Ming dynasty and the foot and neck are dated to the Kangxi period; see B.Quette, ibid., pl.119.

    However, the enamelling on the body of the present vase is comparable to that on a bowl from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, dated 15th century, illustrated in B.Quette, ibid., p.238, pl.27, whilst the neck and foot are most likely from the Kangxi period. It would therefore seem reasonable to extend Zhang Rong's analysis mentioned above to the use during the Kangxi period of earlier Ming dynasty pieces in general.

    本器極為特殊,其器身各部分之斷代問題非常值得研究探討。其特殊性可謂為收藏家、學者和掐絲琺瑯愛好者提供又一次難得機會對相關論題進行研究。詳見北京故宮博物院最新出版的掐絲琺瑯系列專書和2011年紐約出版B.Quette編,《Cloisonné: Chinese Enamels from the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties》一書,書中對清宮收藏的掐絲琺瑯器之改造及加工問題的討論引起各界的熱烈討論。

    張榮在B.Quette編《Cloisonné Chinese Enamels from the Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties》一書《Cloisonné for the Imperial Courts》文章中(頁152)曾指出經過對元代傳世的琺瑯器仔細檢查後,發現大部份的琺瑯器後來有再經過加工,包括該書封面上的掐絲琺瑯尊(見同上,頁150)。此尊只有中間罐形的部位為元代製品,其他部位包括頸部、足部、耳部及其景泰年款均為後來清代康熙一朝所加工。此尊也曾著錄在《故宮博物院文物珍品大系:掐絲琺瑯》,香港,2001年,圖版1。

    北京故宮博物院所藏此件清宮舊藏的掐絲琺瑯尊不僅在紋飾上與本器相似,其後來加工的部位包括銅鎏金獸首鈕、掐絲琺瑯活環和頸側的銅鎏金龍紋耳均與本器如出一轍。另一件類似的例子可參考1913年Benjamin Altman遺贈紐約大都會藝術博物館的掐絲琺瑯尊,此尊與本拍品造型相似,器身定位元代或明初製品,其足部和頸部定為清康熙時期,見B.Quette編,同上,圖版119。

    但本拍品器身的琺瑯紋飾與紐約大都會藝術博物館藏一件十五世紀掐絲琺瑯盌類似,見B.Quette編,同上,頁238,圖版27,其頸部和足部則具康熙時期的風格。因此足見張榮所提出有關康熙一朝把明初物品加工之理論的合理性。
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