A fine copper-red-glazed vase (meiping), Qianlong seal mark and period (1736-1795)1

A fine copper-red-glazed vase (meiping), Qianlong seal mark and period (1736-1795)2

Lot 205. A fine copper-red-glazed vase (meiping), Qianlong seal mark and period (1736-1795). Height 11 7/8  in., 30.1 cm. Estimate 120,000 - 140,000 USD. Lot sold 185,000 USD. © Sotheby's.

with a tapering body rising to a round shoulder beneath a waisted neck and a slightly flared lipped rim, the exterior applied overall with a lustrous red glaze thinning at the mouth and pooling to a deeper tone at the foot, seal mark in underglaze blue. 

Provenance: Collection of Professor Ross Edman.
Sotheby's New York, 23rd September 1995, lot 426.
Sotheby's New York, 19th March 2008, lot 151.

Note: The use of copper-red glaze at Jingdezhen was revived by the Kangxi emperor after the decline in usage during the late 15th, 16th and early 17th centuries. With the effort to reproduce classic Ming sacrificial-red (jihong) porcelains, Qing copper-red pieces quickly outnumbered their Ming counterparts. Nigel Wood in Chinese Glazes, London, 1999, p. 180, notes how the French Jesuit missionary, Pere Francois D'Entrecolles (b. 1664-1741) wrote letters giving detailed accounts of the copper-red production at Jingdezhen, the sourcing of the copper for the glaze, the recipes and the kiln location of the firing of these wares. D'Entrecolles was aware of the difficulties involved in the making of copper-red wares and his account confirms the high level of technical knowledge of the potters at Jingdezhen. Although copper-red pieces can be readily found from the Kangxi and Yongzheng periods, by Qianlong's reign they became fewer in number.

Qianlong meiping in copper-red glaze are rare, although a small number are recorded, ranging between 9 and 12.5 inches in height. See a slightly smaller meiping in the Roemer Museum, Hildesheim, also with a Qianlong reign mark and of the period, illustrated in Ulrich Wiesner, Chinesisches Porzellan, Mainz am Rhein, Hildesheim, 1981, pl. 99; and another sold in our Hong Kong rooms, 10th April 2006, lot 1521. Another smaller example, from the Jingguantang collection, was sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 5th November 1997, lot 864; and a larger vase of this form and glaze, from the collection of Professor Ross Edman, was sold at Sotheby's New York, 23rd September 1995, lot 426

Sotheby's. Fine Chinese Ceramics & Works of Art. New York, 19 march 2013