Large lotus flower porcelain bowl in ruby red and gold, in the centre a spray of hibiscus encircled by radiating lotus petals. Stylized gold leaves along the edge within narrow cartouches.
China, Qianlong Period ( 1736 - 1795 )
Diameter : 30 cm (11.8 in.)
Hairline crack on outer rim
Bonte-Sidden, Vellingen Brugge label
A smaller bowl with the same decoration can be found in the Reeves Center Collection at the Washington and Lee University (USA), illustrated by Thomas V. Litzenburg, JR in Chinese Export Porcelain in the Reeves Center Collection at Washington and Lee University (2003, p. 68, no. 51).
A teapot is illustrated in The Choice of the Private Trader, The Private Market in Chinese Export Porcelain illustrated from the Hodroff Collection (David S. Howard, 1994, p. 151, no. 163).
A milk jug, a tea bowl, a bowl and a teapot with the same decoration are illustrated in Collecting Chinese Export Porcelain by Elinor Gordon (1984, p. 50, pl. VII). This model is also illustrated in Chinese Export Porcelain from the Ethel (Mrs. Julius) Liebman and Arthur L. Liebman Porcelain Collection by Catherine Brawer (1992, no. 119). Another is illustrated in China-Trade Porcelain : an Account of its Historical background, Manufacture, and Decoration and a Study of the Helena Woolworth McCann Collection (John Phillips, 1956, pl. 78).
For a large punch bowl, consult Christie’s London, 4th September 2012, lot 64. Chocolate and tea services are found in the collections at Melford Hall in the county if Suffolk in England. They come from the pillage by Captain Hyde Parler of the Spanish ship Santissima Trinidad in Manila in 1762.
Two bowls are kept at the Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul.
The lotus flower, symbol of purity in Chinese culture, was appreciated in the decors of Chinese porcelain destined to be exported during the mid 18th century.
Existing in a few variations, this model is sometimes influenced by Middle-East decorations with the addition of complex scrollwork.
The beauty of this model lies notably in the pink shading created on the lotus petals, going from pale pink to ruby red.
The lotus petal was used in a similar manner for decorating ceramics from the period of the « Six Dynasties » (220-587 AD).
This ornamentation was still popular during the late Qing Period (1644-1911). For covered bowls dating from this period, consult Christie’s New York, 16 March 2016, lot 1643 (with the 6 character seal mark), or Imperial Porcelain of late Qing from the Kwan Collection » (Art Gallery, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, 13 August– 25 September 1983, p. 131, no. 137).
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