Lot 103. A large imperial bronze vase, hu, Qianlong cast six-character mark in a line and period (1736-1795). Hauteur: 51 cm. (20 in.). Estimate EUR 40,000 - EUR 60,000. Price realised EUR 75,000. © Christie’s Images Limited 2018.
Il est orné en relief sur la panse et le col de dragons dont les corps sont constitués de motifs géométriques archaïsants entrelacés. L'épaulement est rehaussé d'une frise deruyi. Le pied est orné d'un registre de feuilles stylisées surmontant un cartouche rectangulaire comprenant une marque à six caractères de l'empereur Qianlong. Les deux anses en forme de dragons stylisés retiennent des anneaux mobiles.
Provenance: Property from a European private collection.
Note: This vase would have been made as part of a five-piece temple or altar garniture comprising a censer, a pair of vases and a pair of pricket candlesticks, all of equally impressive size and weight. As they bear a Qianlong reign mark it is most likely that they have were made for a specific shrine or temple.
A complete altar garniture in bronze, but of far more simple design, is illustrated by Wan Yi, in situ in the shrine in the Hall for Worshipping Buddhas, Daily life in the Forbidden City, New York, 1988, p. 467. Three different bronze altar garnitures can be seen in a photograph of the Qin An Temple illustrated by Yu Zhuoyun, Palaces of the Forbidden City, Hong Kong, 1986, pp. 198-9, pl. 222.
A pair of closely related vases was offered at Christie's New York, 17 September 2018, lot 601. See also, the pair of massive imperial bronze vases cast with Qianlong reign marks from the Alfred Morrison Collection, Fonthill House sold at Christie's, 9 November 2004, lot 17. Of the same shape as the present vase, they were cast with phoenixes.
The present vase has an incised incription in the interior of the neck making reference to its weight. It bears a mark of 65 jin.