A molded shufu shallow bowl, Yuan dynasty (1279-1368)

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Lot 1174. A molded shufu shallow bowl, Yuan dynasty (1279-1368), 4 ¾ in. (12 cm.) diam. Estimate USD 10,000 - USD 15,000Price realised USD 68,750. © Christie's Images Ltd 2017

The bowl with deep, slightly flared sides is raised on a small foot and molded on the bottom of the interior with lotus scroll below further lotus scroll and a double line border, interrupted by two characters,shu and fu, on opposite sides. The bowl is covered inside and out with a satiny glaze of pale aqua tone, Japanese wood box.

NoteThe term shufu usually refers to a type of glaze which is slightly more opaque than that of a qingbai glaze and is silky in texture, rather than glassy. The term derives from the characters shu and fu executed in low relief under the glaze found on some wares with this glaze, such as the present bowl. It is believed that wares with this mark were intended for use by a Yuan dynasty government department, the Shumiyuan, which is equated with a Privy Council.

Compare the similarly decorated Shufu bowl of this shape, also dated Yuan dynasty, illustrated in Porcelain Collected by Anhui Province Museum, Beijing, 2002, p. 113, pl. 95.

Christie'sFine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, 14 - 15 September 2017, New York