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9 avril 2017

A Junyao 'human figure' 'puzzle' cup, Yuan dynasty (1279-1366)

A Junyao 'human figure' 'puzzle' cup, Yuan dynasty

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Lot 3217. A Junyao 'human figure' 'puzzle' cup, Yuan dynasty (1279-1366), 10.3 cm, 4 in. Estimate 300,000 — 500,000 HKDLot Sold 4,900,000 HKD (592,958 EUR) (630,581 USD)Photo: Sotheby's.

well potted with rounded sides rising from a tapered foot to a gently incurved rim, the interior centred with a stylised dome modelled in the form of an inverted lotus blossom enclosing a small figure depicted clad in robes, the dome with four hemispherical openings on the sides to allow movement of the figurine when filled, applied overall save for the unglazed footring with an unctuous milky-blue glaze draining to a mushroom tone at the edges and extremities

Provenance: Robert Hatfield Ellsworth, New York, acquired before 1994.

Note: Cups of this type are often referred to as ‘puzzle' cups for their ingenious and playful construction. These cups were modelled with a domed structure with openings that allowed water to flow through. When the cup was filled a small figure would appear, amusing its user.

A Junyao ‘puzzle cup’, from the Sir Percival David Collection, now in the British Museum, London, was included in Illustrated Catalogue of Ru, Guan, Jun, Guangdong and Yixing Wares, London, 1999, pl. 47; and another, excavated from Ningcheng, Chifeng, in Inner Mongolia, dated to the Yuan dynasty, is published in The Complete Works of Chinese Ceramics, Shanghai, 2000, pl. 215. See also a white-glazed ‘puzzle' cup attributed to the Song dynasty, published in Regina Krahl, Yuegutang. Eine Berliner Sammlung chinesischer Keramik, Berlin, 2000, pl. 216.

Sotheby's. Song Ceramics from a Distinguished Private Collector, Hong Kong, 05 Apr 2017, 11:00 AM

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