A very rare pair of famille noire green-enamelled ‘cranes and clouds’ bowls, Kangxi six-character marks within double circles in underglaze blue and of the period (1662-1722)

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Lot 3021. A very rare pair of famille noire green-enamelled ‘cranes and clouds’ bowls, Kangxi six-character marks within double circles in underglaze blue and of the period (1662-1722), 4 7/8 in. (12.5 cm.) diam., box. Estimate HKD 2,600,000 - HKD 3,500,000(USD 335,316 - USD 451,387) © Christie's Images Ltd 2017

Each is potted with deep rounded sides rising from a short slightly tapered foot, and delicately enamelled on both interior and exterior with flying cranes among clouds in a translucent and vibrant green enamel reserved on a black ground. 

ProvenanceSold at Sotheby’s London, 9 and 10 November 2005, lot 747

Note: The present decorative scheme is highly unusual and no other example appears to have been published. This technique is an extension of the famille noire decorative style, but only employs green enamels which when layered with black, produces a particularly lustrous effect which was not easy to achieve and which accounts for the rarity of pieces produced in this technique in the later Yongzheng and Qianlong periods. Yongzheng marked examples include a saucer dish and a globular bottle vase, in the Baur Collection, Geneva, illustrated by J. Ayers in the Catalogue, vol. IV, no. A568-69; and a vase sold at Christie’s Hong Kong, 26 September 1989, lot 630, and now in the Sanbao Tang Collection, illustrated by P.Y.K. Lam, ‘Myriad Longevity Without Boundaries’, Arts of Asia, vol. 40, September-October 2010, p. 111, no. 6. Qianlong-marked examples include the large dish sold at Christie’s London, 5 June 1995, lot 210, and sold again at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, 10 April 2006, lot 1520.

An important and rare green enamel and black-ground charger, mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795)

An important and rare green enamel and black-ground charger, mark and period of Qianlong (1736-1795). Sold 13,560,000 HKD at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, 10 April 2006, lot 1520. Photo: Sotheby's 

Christie's. The Imperial Sale / Important Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, 31 May 2017, Convention Hall