A rare underglazed copper-red 'Phoenix' meiping, Qing dynasty, 18th century

Lot 84. A rare underglazed copper-red 'Phoenix' meiping, Qing dynasty, 18th century35.5cm, 14in. Estimate 25,000 — 35,000 GBP. Lot sold 37,250 GBP© Sotheby's.

the broad round-shouldered body rising from a recessed base to a narrow short neck with everted rolled rim, painted in rich red tones around the exterior with two large phoenix amidst leafy peony sprays, all between a lotus-lappet band at the base and a flower-filled lappet collar and stiff leaf band at the neck.

ProvenanceA Private French Collection.

NoteThis vase is impressive for the skilful and freely rendered design of phoenix and peonies using the temperamental copper red pigment, and no other related example appears to have been published. For a slightly smaller meipingdecorated with a wide central band of a phoenix amongst flowering branches between a band of stiff leaves at the foot and a peony scroll on the shoulder, see one sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 13th January 1987, lot 518. For a meiping vase decorated with a related design in the doucai palette, see one illustrated in The Complete Works of Chinese Ceramics, vol. 15, pt. II, Shanghai, 1999, pl. 128.

Further vases of various forms with copper red decorated designs of phoenix include a pear shape example sold in our Hong Kong rooms, 12-13th May 1976, lot 166; and a globular vase sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 13th January, 1987, lot 517.

Sotheby's. Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, London, 10 Nov 2010