A rare small Guanyao shallow dish, Southern Song dynasty, 12th-13th century

Lot 1326. A rare small Guanyao shallow dish, Southern Song dynasty, 12th-13th century; 3 13/16 in. (9.7 cm.) diamEstimate USD 30,000 - USD 50,000Price realised USD 35,000. © Christie's Images Ltd 2011.

Of shallow form with flared sides, covered all over in a thick glaze of greyish-blue tone suffused with a network of black crackle continuing onto the base, the foot left unglazed to expose the buff grey ware, Japanese wood box.

Provenance: Private English collection.
Bluett & Sons, London.
Private Japanese collection.

NoteThis shallow dish, with its dark body and delicately crackled glaze exemplifies the sophisticated elegance of wares made at southern Chinese kilns. The Five Great Song Dynasty Wares are traditionally Guan, Ge, Ding, Jun and Ru. Each of these wares has its own characteristics, and in the case of Guan and Ge wares the simple forms combined with a rich blue-grey crackled glaze produce ceramics of deceptively simple beauty.

A Guan dish of larger size (16 cm.) and similar shape, with short foot and steeply flared sides, although fired on spurs, is in the collection of the National Palace Museum, illustrated in Kuan Ware of the Southern Song Dynasty, Book 1, Part II, Hong Kong, 1962, p. 150, pls. 59 and 59a. Another dish of larger size (22 cm.), although of more shallow form and with more steeply flared sides, also in the National Palace Museum, is illustrated in the exhibition catalogue, Special Exhibition of Sung Dynasty Kuan Ware, Taipei, 1989, p. 98.

Christie's. Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art Part I and Part II Including Property from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections, New York, 24 March 2011