A magnificent and large rhinoceros horn 'chilong, peach and lychee' libation cup  17th century

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Lot 53 Y
A magnificent and large rhinoceros horn 'chilong, peach and lychee' libation cup
17th century

Sold for HK$ 1,875,000 (US$ 238,941) inc. premium
A magnificent and large rhinoceros horn 'chilong, peach and lychee' libation cup
17th century
Deftly carved inside and out in the form of a large lotus leaf, the exterior with leafy flowering and fruiting branches of lychee, peach and sweet flag in relief, each lychee finely detailed with incised lines simulating the fruit's skin, the handle formed by a sinuous chilong among gnarled branches issuing lotus blooms and pods, with a long mane and bifurcated tail, detailed peering over the rim into the interior and grasping a branch of pomegranates in its mouth, with two further chilong to the interior, the horn of dark-reddish brown tone. 21cm (8 1/4in) long

Footnotes

  • 十七世紀 犀角雕花果團龍紋杯

    Provenance:
    Maurice (1853-1922) and Marguerite Sulzbach (1863-1945), and thence by descent

    來源:
    Maurice(1853-1922年)及Marguerite Sulzbach(1863-1945年)伉儷收藏,並由後人繼承

    Maurice Sigismund Sulzbach (1853-1922), was born in Frankfurt am Main, to a banking family. He moved to Paris in December 1882, when he married Marguerite Ida Premsel. He was an academic collector with extremely eclectic tastes ranging from Dutch old master paintings to objects of Islamic and Asian art. He donated several items to the Louvre before he died. His wife Marguerite was more attracted to contemporary art and befriended many painters such as Maurice Denis, Jean Louis Forain and, later on, the Japanese artist Foujita. Marguerite was also an artist in her own right and started painting on porcelain at an early age and later created works in pottery at a kiln installed in her home.

    Maurice Sigismund Sulzbach(1853-1922年),出生於美茵河畔法蘭克福一個銀行世家。 1882年12月與Marguerite Ida Premsel結為夫婦後移居巴黎。他是一位學術收藏家,並擁有極其不拘一格的品味,收藏範疇從荷蘭古典油畫到伊斯蘭和亞洲藝術品不等。去世前,他向羅浮宮捐贈了幾件藏品。他的妻子Marguerite則對當代藝術更為感興趣,並與多位畫家成為朋友,例如莫里斯·丹尼、讓路易福朗,以及後來認識的日本藝術家藤田嗣治。Marguerite本人也是一位藝術家,從小開始在瓷器上繪畫,並後來在家裡安裝了一個窯爐以便創作。

    This large and outstanding rhinoceros horn libation cup encapsulates the exceptional level of skill and craftsmanship of the master carver, demonstrated by the naturalistic carving of the numerous fruits, plants and chilong in various levels of relief including in openwork, conveying a sense of dynamism and liveliness. This is further augmented by the remarkable large size of the libation cup.

    A rare feature of this rhinoceros horn libation cup is the rare combination of lychee and peach motifs. The word 'lychee' (lizhi 荔枝) is homophonous with 'establishing a son' (lizi 立子), and symbolise progeny. Pomegranates too, which the adult dragon clasps in its mouth in the interior, is also regarded as a symbol of progeny because of its numerous crystal-like seeds. Another dragon in the interior clasps a bunch of grapes, which also symbolise fecundity and posterity. In addition to this, peaches are well known symbols of longevity associated with deities such as Shoulao and the Queen Mother of the West. This libation cup thus displays a wealth of auspicious wishes for long life and numerous children.

    此杯以犀牛角雕成,杯身為一枝大荷葉,雕數小枝盤環旋繞,並雕荔枝、桃、菖蒲作為襯托。杯耳由蓮枝鏤空而成,上攀一螭,探首直入杯內,口銜石榴枝幹,杯內另雕兩隻螭龍。器身呈深紅褐色。此器採用鏤雕、浮雕、淺刻等技法,技藝嫻熟,構思巧妙,極富生氣,且選材碩大,尤為難得。

    此杯所飾荔枝與「立子」諧音,寓意「早立子」,有早生兒子的祝願。杯內所飾石榴和葡萄紋取其多籽的形象,有「多子」、「榴開百子」、子孫繁多的美好寓意。同時,桃是長壽的象徵,因此此杯富含吉祥之意。
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A magnificent and large rhinoceros horn 'chilong, peach and lychee' libation cup  17th century
A magnificent and large rhinoceros horn 'chilong, peach and lychee' libation cup  17th century
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Y CITES

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