A Longquan celadon 'twin fish' dish, China, Southern Song dynasty (1127-1279)

A Longquan celadon 'twin fish' dish, China, Southern Song dynasty (1127-1279)Estimate 3000/5000 €. Unsold  Photo Nagel

The dish is potted with deep lobed sides rising to a flat everted rim. The interior has a pair of sprig-moulded fish detailed with fins and scales. The dish is covered with a celadon glaze of sea-green tone thinning to whitish at the extremities with the exception of the unglazed foot rim. Good condition

Property from an old South German private collection, bought in Asia in the 1970's 

The present dish, notable for its desirable soft bluish-green colour, is a fine example of its kind. Dishes of this type, known as 'twin fish' dishes, were popular products of the Longquan kilns during the late Southern Song to early Ming period. Similar dishes have been recovered from Southern Song kilns in the Longquan region, such as the bowl unearthed at Jincun, illustrated in Longquan qingci yanjiu, Beijing, 1989, pl. 36:3. Longquan moulded fish dishes of this type were recovered from the cargo of a trading vessel that sank off the coast of Sinan, South Korea, in the 1320s, and were included in the Special Exhibition of Cultural Relics Found off the Sinan Coast, National Museum of Korea, Seoul, 1977, pl. 28. Paired fish symbolize fertility and connubial bliss, and they are also one of the Eight Buddhist symbols.

NAGEL. "Asian Art". Sale 722, 06/06/2015