A fine copper-red glazed waterpot, Mark and Period of Yongzheng

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Lot 3711. A fine copper-red glazed waterpot, Mark and Period of Yongzheng (1723-1735); 6.2 cm., 2 3/8  in. Estimate 400,000 — 600,000 HKD. Lot sold  1,840,000 HKD. Photo Sotheby’s

well potted with an ovoid body tapering from a short foot, the exterior covered with an even copper-red glaze, the base inscribed in underglaze blue with a six-character reign mark within a double circle.

ExhibitedMonochrome Ceramics of the Ming and Ch’ing Dynasties, Min Chiu Society at the Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1977, cat. no. 15

Note: In its elegant bud-shape, this piece is inspired by Jun waterpots of the Song and Yuan dynasties. A closely related example was sold in these rooms, 20th May 1981, lot 788, and again at Christie’s Hong Kong, 28th May 2014, lot 3007. For a Song prototype, see one illustrated in Regina Krahl, Chinese Ceramics in the Meiyintang Collection, vol. 1, London, 1994, pl. 393; and a Yuan example, in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, published in A Panorama of Ceramics in the Collection of the National Palace Museum. Chün Ware, Taipei, 1999, pl. 97.

A great connoisseur of antique porcelains and with a discerning aesthetic sense for works of art, the Yongzheng Emperor demanded the highest level of craftsmanship in the production of elegant and finely manufactured implements for personal use. Imperial records note that in the 7th year of his reign (corresponding to 1729), he placed an order at the imperial kilns in Jingdezhen for waterpots of various shapes and colours to be made, many of which were inspired by antiquity. For an example, see an unmarked guan-type waterpot of this form sold in these rooms, 20th May 1980, lot 103; and a Yongzheng mark and period tea-dust glazed example of similar shape, but lobed and of larger size, in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, included in the Museum’s exhibition Harmony and Integrity. The Yongzheng Emperor and His Times, Taipei, 2009, cat. no. II-58..

Sotheby’s. Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art, Hong Kong, 08 oct. 2014