Lot 2814. A very rare black-ground green-glazed lobed brushwasher, Kangxi six-character mark and possibly of the period (1662-1722); 5 1/2in. (14cm.) wide. Estimate HKD 500,000 - HKD 800,000. Price realised HKD 2,060,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2010
The interior of the decafoil dish painted with a boatman in a river landscape with dwellings on the side of a wooded and rocky bank and with craggy mountains in the distance, below panels depicting a butterfly, a crab, a praying mantis, a cricket, and a shrimp alternating with floral panels, the base countersunk and with a broad unglazed foot, box.
Provenance: J.M. Hu collection, sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 30 October 1995, lot 721
Greenwald Collection, no. 66.
Literature: Gerald M. Greenwald, The Greenwald Collection, Two Thousand Years of Chinese Ceramics, 1996, Catalogue, no. 66
Christie's 20 Years in Hong Kong 1986-2006, Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Highlights, Hong Kong, 2006, p. 187.
Note: No other brushwasher of this decoration appears to have been published.
Kangxi-marked washers of this form are recorded, cf. a celadon-glazed washer sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 20 March 1990, lot 735; and a famille verte decorated washer reserved on a celadon ground included in The Tsui Museum of Art, Chinese Ceramics IV, Qing Dynasty, pl. 108.
It is very rare to find this palette in the Kangxi period. However, 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 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.