Lot 188. A blue and white 'mythical beast' incense holder, Wanli six-character mark in a line in underglaze blue and of the period (1573-1619); 4 1/8 in. (10.6 cm.) long. Estimate GBP 15,000 - GBP 20,000. Price realised GBP 52,500 © Christie's Images Ltd 2018.
The vessel is moulded as a qilin with its mouth open and seated on its haunches with its tripartite tail flicked upwards. Its face, scales, tail, and details are depicted in various shades of underglaze blue, and the vessel is marked along the back of its horn.
Provenance: Property from a private French collection in Dijon.
Note: Compare a vessel of the same date and form catalogued as an incense holder and decorated in wucai enamels in the Percival David Foundation at the British Museum, number PDF.713, illustrated in Rebecca Feng, Ming Colours Polychrome Porcelain from Jingdezhen, London, Percival David Foundation, 2006
Incense-stick holder, Ming dynasty, Wanli mark and period, AD1573–1620. Porcelain with underglaze cobalt-blue, and overglaze red, green and yellow decoration, Jingdezhen, Jiangxi province. Height: 9 cm. Sir Percival David Foundation, PDF 713. © The Trustees of the British Museum.
Christie's. Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, London, 15 May 2018. SALE 15487