A fine and very rare blue and white double-gourd vase, Qianlong six-character sealmark and of the period (1735-1796) 

Lot 3054. A fine and very rare blue and white double-gourd vase, Qianlong six-character sealmark and of the period (1735-1796). Estimate HKD 9,000,000 - HKD 12,000,000 (USD 1,164,116 - USD 1,552,154). Price Realised HKD 24,180,000 (USD 3,126,481). © Christie's Images Ltd 2010.

Well painted around the globular body with a lotus scroll betweenruyi-heads encircling the shoulder and lotus lappets around the foot, the collared neck with further formal borders, all below the bulbous mouth decorated with further scrolling lotus within a trefoil border, flanked by a pair of strap-shaped handles with ruyi-head terminals - 9 1/8 in. (23.3 cm.) high, box  

ProvenancePreviously sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 12 May 1976, lot 111
The T.Y. Chao Family Collection, sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 19 May 1987, lot 274 

LiteratureSotheby's Hong Kong - Twenty Years, Hong Kong, 1993, p. 157, no. 186

ExhibitedMing and Ch'ing Porcelain from the Collection of the T. Y. Chao Family Foundation, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 1978, illustrated in the Catalogue no. 88  

NotesOnly one other Qianlong-marked blue and white vase of this form and decoration appears to be known, and was sold at Sotheby's Hong Kong, 3 May 1994, lot 174. Earlier Yongzheng-marked vases of this same shape but with different decorations are published, the first in the National Palace Museum Collection, Taipei, included in the Porcelain in the National Palace Museum, Blue-and-White Ware of the Ch'ing Dynasty, Book I, 1968, pl. 5; and the other is illustrated by D. Macintosh, Chinese Blue and White Porcelain, pl. 56, and was sold at Christie's Hong Kong 29 April, 2001, lot 559.

This interesting double-gourd shape also appears in monochromes of the Qianlong period, cf. the Ge-type glaze flask included in the Exhibition of Important Chinese Ceramics from the Robert Chang Collection, Christie's London, 1991, illustrated in the Catalogue, no. 61. 

Christie's. Important Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, 1 December 2010, Hong Kong